IoT Data Plans: 6 Considerations for Choosing a Provider

November 9, 2022

The potential of the Internet of Things (IoT) is enormous. To unleash it, you need more than just advanced technology. If you are using a cellular-connected device, you need an IoT connectivity plan aligned to your specific business needs. Whether you’re just starting your IoT deployment or have thousands of connections installed, look for the following qualities when considering a provider.

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6 Things You Need in an IoT Provider

1. IoT Data Plans with Commercial Flexibility Delivered by a Proven Leader

When it comes to IoT data plans, flexibility is critical. Different industries and use cases have particular needs and require distinct IoT connectivity plans.

If you have one or more deployments, your IoT connectivity provider must be able to accommodate your legacy devices. They must go beyond supporting the generational standard (e.g., 2G, 3G, 4G LTE) and onboard them with minimal service disruption. It should offer future-proof support without locking you into a particular technology roadmap. Your provider should also optimize your deployment’s complete business life cycle spending.

IoT providers who own and operate a core network can deliver customized offerings with features like:

  • IoT data packages for different cellular data usage profiles
  • Tailor-made billing schemes and automated rate plan optimization
  • Enhanced solutions, such as:
    • Single stock-keeping units (SKU) via multiple international mobile subscriber identities (multi-IMSI)
    • Local breakouts
    • Enhanced remote monitoring
    • Troubleshooting tools

2. Multilayer Security Infrastructure and VPN Connections

A closed lock. Multiple layers of security are essential for IoT data plans.

Security is top of mind for every business. IoT deployments pose unique challenges and regulatory hurdles connected IoT devices may need to comply with to be allowed into the market. As you consider an IoT data plan provider, be sure they can deliver advanced security capabilities through:

  • A multilayer network
  • Routing and transport security
  • Fast implementation of a customizable virtual private network (VPN) and access point name (APN) access solutions

Cybersecurity threats don’t stop, so your IoT security can’t rest. Look for a partner that offers dependable, georedundant 24/7 monitoring backed by network operations center (NOC) support.

3. Nonstop Support from Dedicated IoT Experts

Even a few seconds of service interruption can seriously impact an IoT-dependent business. You must be confident that support is always on call from any location if an issue occurs. It’s essential to work with an operator equipped to offer 24/7/365 support from NOC and tech support hubs across time zones and geographies. These must be staffed with IoT-trained personnel, not consumer cellular support call centers pulling an IoT script.

4. IoT Data Plans with Smart, Centralized Connectivity and Device Management

Managing complex IoT connections and device deployments is time-consuming and costly. The right partner should empower you with all the management tools you need in one intuitive interface with capabilities that enable:

  • Zero-touch onboarding and remote provisioning and configuration to minimize truck rolls and manual processes, which in turn can reduce expenses
  • Centralized monitoring and troubleshooting to help you resolve issues faster
  • Alerts and triggers to proactively monitor issues and automate actions based on predefined activities
  • A robust application programming interface (API) library that allows you platform integration to ease development

5. Bundled Offerings for Maximum Value

To realize IoT’s full potential, you need connectivity and advanced hardware enabled by a robust platform. The right partner can provide bundled offerings and build a customized solution that:

  • Aligns with life cycle cost targets
  • Provides robust security across hardware, connectivity, data at rest and in transit, etc.

A bundled offering minimizes technical IoT solution gaps, compatibility issues and dealing with multiple vendors. It enables you to maximize your IoT capabilities and gain more value from your deployment.

6. IoT Data Plans from an Experienced IoT Leader

If you want your IoT data plan to support your deployment’s life cycle, choose a service provider with proven IoT leadership and expertise. An IoT partner with world-class experience and resources can accelerate your deployment and unlock the business outcomes you need. The right provider has the essential tools and infrastructure with expert support to help you scale your business.

Is your IoT data plan unable to keep up as your deployment scales? We have the IoT connectivity plan for you, whether you want to convert your existing IoT deployments or start with a few connections. Speak with our experts and request your IoT connectivity starter kit today.

Editor’s Note: This blog was originally published on 13 July 2017 and has since been updated.