Proving the Business Case for the Internet of Things

GSMA releases mobile guidelines to spur efficient IoT adoption

Iain Morris
October 16, 2014
The GSM Association (GSMA) has released a new set of guidelines to ensure Internet of Things (IoT) devices and applications communicate via mobile networks in the most intelligent and efficient way.

The guidelines have received the support of a number of leading mobile operators, including AT&T (Dallas, TX, USA), China Mobile (Beijing, China), China Telecom (Beijing, China), China Unicom (Beijing, China), Deutsche Telekom (Bonn, Germany), Etisalat (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates), KT (Seoul, South Korea), Orange (Paris, France), NTT DoCoMo (Tokyo, Japan), Tata Teleservices (Mumbai, India), Telefonica (Madrid, Spain), Telenor Connexion (Stockholm, Sweden) and VimpelCom (Amsterdam, Netherlands).

They have also secured the backing of IoT specialists Sierra Wireless (Richmond, Canada) and Jasper (Mountain View, CA, USA).

In a statement, the GSMA said the aim was to support device and application developers as the IoT market develops.

The guidelines cover various best practice areas, including the issues of data aggregation within devices, non-synchronous network access, application scalability and guidance on how to manage signaling traffic from de-activated or out-of-subscription SIMs.

“It is imperative that the IoT market develops with the right standards and best practices in place, reducing undue pressure on mobile networks across the world and allowing the Internet of Things to grow unimpeded,” said Alex Sinclair, the chief technology officer of the GSMA.

“The GSMA has worked closely with its operator members to develop connection efficiency guidelines that ensure that IoT device and application makers can follow a common approach to create efficient, reliable services that can scale as the market grows and we encourage all parties to adopt these moving forward,” he added.

The industry association says it wants the guidelines to be used by all players in the mobile ecosystem to ensure that mobile networks can efficiently accommodate the growing number of connected devise and services resulting from the surge of interest in M2M.

It claims the guidelines will help IoT device and application developers to expand the number of devices connecting to mobile networks while preventing service outages and ensuring optimal performance – ultimately ensuring the market is able to scale across a variety of sectors, including automotive, transportation, utilities and health.

GSMA Intelligence, the association’s market-research unit, reckons the number of mobile connections will reach 7.4 billion in 2014 and rise to 10 billion by 2020.

Besides working on the guidelines, the GSMA said it was also carrying out a project to develop a common set of acceptance tests for IoT devices and applications and ensure that best practices are being followed.

Its aim is to establish a single, standard set of connection efficiency tests for IoT devices and applications.
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