LAS VEGAS--AT&T Mobility (NYSE: T) launched its M2X Data Service platform as a commercial product, encouraging developers to use the platform if they want managed services for Internet of Things applications. M2X represents another stab at making it easier for developers, especially those focused on the enterprise market, to launch IoT apps.
AT&T, which made the announcement here at its annual Developer Summit as part of the 2015 Consumer Electronics Show, said that starting today enterprise customers can purchase commercial plans for the M2X Data Service. M2X is a carrier-grade, cloud-based data store that lets enterprises collect, analyze, and share data that can be tracked over a period of time from connected devices.
The offering by AT&T is one of several initiatives the carrier has taken focused on the so-called "Industrial Internet," or connected devices in the manufacturing or industrial machine world. AT&T doesn't want to just provide wireless connectivity for those kinds of devices but also wants to be a managed services and solutions provider so that it can charge enterprises for both basic connectivity and value-added services on top of that.
"In the Industrial IoT world, connecting devices and machines to the Internet only has value if you can effectively store, analyze and leverage the data that's being transmitted," said Mike Troiano, AT&T's vice president, Industrial Internet of Things. "Our M2X Data Service allows businesses of all sizes to manage and better utilize the data they collect from connected devices."
Since launching last year in beta, AT&T said several companies, large and small, have begun integrating and using the M2X Data Service, including Ericsson (NASDAQ: ERIC), Samsung Electronics, WiPro and Numerex.
AT&T also launched a beta version of its Flow Designer, which was developed at the AT&T Foundry innovation center. The offering is a new, cloud-based visual development tool aimed at making it easier to build new IoT applications. AT&T noted that typical IoT-focused solutions can be complex to design since they require application integrations at the device, network and application layers.
AT&T is offering a free M2X Connection Kit to developers at the 2015 AT&T Developer Summit. The kit, which provides developers with a platform powered by Jasper for building connected devices and services, includes three test SIMs and six months of free data service that can be used for device and solution testing.
Last year, AT&T, Cisco Systems, General Electric, IBM and Intel forged new group, the Industrial Internet Consortium, to try to create standards for the sensors inside machines and sprouting up around cities as part of the Internet of Things.
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