Capitalising on the increasing visibility and presence of the IoT (Internet of Things) represents the next big market opportunity for existing MNOs (Mobile Network Operators).
There are hundreds of cellular operators (one in most countries) that have not yet worked out how they might gain a slice of the global IoT market. It is likely that these operators have assessed the platform market at some point in the past and have perhaps determined it to be too expensive and lacking in ROI certainty in terms of servicing mainly their home (country) market. They probably haven't even considered how they might play in any global connectivity opportunities.
The development of eUICC (embedded Universal Integrated Circuit Card) enabled connectivity solutions signals a big change for the globally-connected, interconnected networks currently dominating mobile technologies - one which could signal a move from disruptive to non-disruptive integration across national networks, if handled intelligently. Stream Technologies' custom IoT-X system is designed to facilitate this transition, and allow operators to maximise profits and efficiency.
eUICC and eSIM (embedded SIM) are two terms that are regularly confused and used incorrectly in discussing the technology. eSIM is an embeddable SIM card, while eUICC is a remote, programmable SIM card which is available in a range of form factors. Three key aspects are affecting the roll-out of eUICC services worldwide. The first is the composition and history of the MNO sector. The second is the fast-changing connectivity demands of large global enterprises. The third is the rapid development and emergence of new technologies.
As IoT becomes commonplace, there will be an acceleration of growth for robust, secure, easy to manage and cost-effective cellular connectivity on a global scale. Enterprises that embrace this digital transformation will see serious value enhancement and immense competitive differentiation, but only if they are able to address the patchwork and fragmented structure of the current global cellular network. The most agile networks are starting to recognise this, and are enabling access to solutions powered by the eUICC standard by acquiring or imitating net-new businesses.
Enterprises continue to accelerate their global reach as their products evolve and increasingly seek new markets worldwide. Rapidly emerging new technologies and technology companies are increasingly being recognised by enterprises around the world as the conduit to help scale global connectivity based on the eUICC specification as evolved by the GSMA.
Using eUICC as standard could potentially introduce new delivery and commercial models around connectivity. Potentially this will require multiple evolved technologies which will open up immense scaling in cellular connected devices and the transit of data via existing cellular networks. Coordinating change on this scale is undoubtedly a complex challenge.