Amdocs is launching two new programs that enable service providers to quickly enter the connected devices market – one focused on machine-to-machine (M2M) services and the other on connected devices in home and office.
With its M2M service, Amdocs is ready to set up any service provider to turn around and support its customers with M2M applications such as smart utility meters, connected electrical vehicles and connected wellness.
The real-time solution can support multiple dynamic business models, including converged, prepaid and postpaid, and complex M2M value chain, handling a wide variety of services and huge volumes of devices, the company said.
Amdocs already has a set of templates for tariff plans, business processes, access profiles and user interfaces. Service providers, instead of building an M2M service from scratch, can simply reconfigure the templates to suit their needs. That ultimately enables rapid on-boarding and support of any M2M partners.
Amdocs said the solution is highly flexible, with the ability to change business processes, portals and tariff plans in a matter of minutes.
The concern many service providers have with adding more services is that it will by necessity lead to an expansion of customer support services – with the cost of support eating into the relatively slim margins such new services are likely to have.
Amdocs said it addresses this by transferring common operational aspects to M2M partners, with self-management tools for ordering, provisioning and trouble ticketing.
Amdocs first demonstrated its Connected Home solution about a year ago. The approach is based on a box (built by M2M Solution in France) that communicates with various connected devices via wireless and takes advantage of the broadband connection to relay data.
The cloud-based solution enables service providers to rapidly launch packaged home and business services such as remote security, energy, health and multimedia.
By packaging everything that might be needed, Amdocs expects it will reduce service provider development times and back office investment costs such as service on-boarding, inventory control, billing and customer care. And, of course, the Amdocs Connected Home solution can be integrated with existing business and operational support systems (B/OSS) and core network elements.
As of a year ago, various companies had already developed well over 200 connected devices that would work with Amdocs' Connected Home system, everything from leak detectors for water heaters to blood pressure monitors.
Ray Bennett, director of Amdocs' broadband, cable and satellite division, said that while the service will depend on the gateway device it showed earlier, nearly 60 percent of the functionality of that gateway already resides in some of the customer premises equipment (CPE) that many service providers have out there right now. Other CPE manufacturers could easily reconfigure their products to support Connected Home services and devices, he noted.