MetTel is touting its single SIM for automatically connecting IoT devices to the strongest signal via the four major U.S. operators—Verizon, AT&T, T-Mobile and Sprint—and 650 carriers worldwide.
Before settling on cellular standards-based IoT, the company considered scores of other solutions out there.
“We did look at all of them,” Max Silber, vice president of mobility and IoT at MetTel, told FierceWirelessTech. “Obviously, we like unlicensed because unlicensed is the closest word you could say to free," but “we quickly ruled them out just because of the exposure on the security.”
Even though unlicensed bands could provide good throughput, “we typically didn’t need such high bandwidth. Narrowband was sufficient for over 95% of the IoT applications, so we really didn’t need the advantages that an unlicensed band could give us," he said.
The company has had MVNO agreements with cellular carriers for some time, so it knows the space well. "We were much more leaning toward and ended up sticking to what we know and we can rely on, which is cellular, from a security perspective, from a flexibility perspective, from a device availability perspective,” he said.
And overall, being an MVNO allows the company to manage the cost structure so even though customers are getting the best signal, they’re not getting charged a ton of money on the back end. As a wholesaler, MetTel can manage that cost element for them, he said.
The company said its MetTel Single SIM offers real-time data on session activity that provides a current view of product status and location on anything from a mobile phone to a jet engine. It also archives the past 48 hours of sessions for reference and analysis.
Geo-fencing gives the MetTel IoT Single SIM the ability to proactively self-report when it has entered special zones or reached its destination, so businesses are making informed decisions with always-on mobile tracking, engineering and analytics.
MetTel serves a range of clients across industries that are connecting assets to the IoT network including parking meters, computing devices, digital displays and a range of equipment in industries such as retail, healthcare, energy, manufacturing and distribution, food and beverage.
Another notable feature is that while MetTel’s IoT Single SIM currently resides on a hardware chip, it uses an eSIM-ready infrastructure. Conceptually, an eSIM can host multiple profiles and work with all form factors, morphing from one type of carrier SIM to another, thereby making it universal.
Although the eSIM has not yet arrived on the market, similar capabilities can be realized today with the MetTel IoT Single SIM. The difference is that the eSIM’s self-contained IMSI identity marker allows it to autonomously shift forms while MetTel’s version boasts unlimited IMSI in the cloud, providing MetTel and its clients with greater control over the IoT Single SIM’s transformations from one carrier network to another, the company explained.