Here, Robert Colvin, reflects on his early days at a start-up and the huge opportunities that lie ahead for everyone, now that connectivity from Telenor Connexion is available on AWS Marketplace.
More than ten years ago I founded Six8 Labs, initially a web development and hosting company, we evolved into custom IoT solutions for various clients. The biggest hurdle was always connectivity.
In the beginning we made all the usual mistakes – our initial prototypes were WiFi versions, we’d deliver them, the customer was happy for a day until the router crashed, because someone simply changed the password.
We developed routines for managing configurations to handle multiple installations. It was a pure nightmare of overhead and maintenance. We knew we needed to move to cellular.
We considered commercial SIMs and trialed some in Hot Spots or embedded modems – whilst these were off the shelf solutions, with a fast time-to-market and perfectly suitable for Proof-of-Concept, it became apparent extremely quickly that it was never going to scale and managing a fleet of standard telephony SIMs was not practical or feasible.
The reality was that there was no other option. As a small company we couldn’t dream of taking on the initial costs of establishing an enterprise agreement for IoT specific SIMs that would give us the control we needed. As a result, the IoT side of Six8 Labs was scaled back dramatically to focus on small installations and PoCs that we were able to control.
Times have changed since then. In recent years, technologies previously considered overly complex or inaccessible have been simplified and made available for more people to use.
Driven by platforms such as Arduino and Raspberry Pi, companies such as Adafruit and Sparkfun as well as the general maker community, has ensured many complex technologies have become more commodified.
This trend combined with crowdfunding, opensource and affordable cloud computing, has helped level the playing field making it easier for startups, entrepreneurs and global enterprises to compete and innovate.
The recent announcement of the IoT Trial Service from Telenor Connexion being made available via the AWS Marketplace would have been a dream to me all those years ago. It’s now so much easier to purchase a SIM online with global 2G, 3G, 4G and LPWAN connectivity.
Partnering with Telenor Connexion means it’s a breeze to keep solutions running the way you need them, combined with 24/7/365 expert IoT support backing everything up. This ensures businesses of every size have more time to focus on their customers and building innovative solutions rather than tying hours up in monitoring and managing connectivity.
Getting started with Telenor Connexion IoT connectivity is now a few clicks away. In just a couple of days, you can get access to 5 SIMs, 10 SMS and 100 MB traffic per month, and quickly see what your solution has been missing all this time. Furthermore, once you’re ready to scale, you can easily upgrade to a commercial service to add even more features and SLAs and unleash millions of devices on the world!
It really is that easy.