Etisalat has joined the Jasper Wireless-powered M2M alliance that includes a number of leading international operators.
The operator’s membership was announced during this week’s Mobile World Congress in Barcelona and means the alliance now comprises eight players, including an operator from the Middle East for the first time.
Etisalat (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates) was already a customer of Jasper Wireless (Mountain View, USA), whose Control Center platform is a core component of the M2M alliance.
Members say the alliance “is also open to prospective members who do not have a partnership with Jasper Wireless”, but the deal may stoke speculation about the future involvement in the alliance of other Jasper Wireless customers, which include US operator AT&T (Dallas, USA) and Latin American telecoms giant America Movil (Mexico City, Mexico).
The alliance’s stated aim is to “build the technical capability to simplify multi-network M2M solutions for multinational customers in the retail, healthcare, consumer electronics, transportation and automobile and energy sectors and on a worldwide scale”.
The other alliance members are KPN (The Hague, Netherlands), NTT DoCoMo (Tokyo, Japan), Rogers Communications (Toronto, Canada), SingTel (Singapore), Telefonica (Madrid, Spain), Telstra (Melbourne, Australia) and VimpelCom (Amsterdam, Netherlands).
Meanwhile, the newest customer of Jasper Wireless appears to be Australia’s Optus Business (Sydney, Australia), which signed a deal with the platform specialist this week.
“By automating operational processes, it will enable us to streamline M2M deployments, reduce total cost of ownership and provide excellent customer experience,” said Phil Offer, the vice president of mobility and convergence for Optus Business, in explaining the move.
The alliance has also announced it is conducting trials of a worldwide SIM card on a connected management platform.
Along with greater collaboration between vendors and operators, such efforts would help to remove a barrier to the wider adoption of M2M services.
“Multinational corporations planning to roll out connected devices worldwide face a multitude of hurdles, including mobile operators with limited local coverage, fragmented network landscapes and multiple connected device platforms,” notes the alliance.