Why IoT Data is More Cost-effective Than Mobile Broadband

Connecting The World

I get asked regularly, ‘if IoT data is more cost effective than mobile broadband (MBB) data?’. Of course, my answer is always yes. For many it is hard to understand based onan initial cost price comparison, so let me give a real example of how IoT data turned around an opportunity for one of our end users and offered a much more cost-effective solution.

We have a London based cab company that has circa 200 cars on the road already using a UK roaming IoT data SIM in the job management system to great effect. The business owner wanted to offer a free WI-FI service in the back of their executive cabs and after shopping around took 30 MBB SIMs with a WI-FI hotspot device direct from a mobile network. Each SIM has its own 4gb allowance at a cost of £420 each month. 

All seemed to be going well until the initial bill came through. Having no visibility of the bill they did not know what to expect but certainly did not expect to see a bill that was in thousands. Upon investigation it appeared that whilst some of the devices had stayed within the 4GB allowance a number had significantly over utilised the data and had generated some significant over utilisation charges. This is a typical example of bill shock.

 It was clear that not having the visibility of usage, ability to manage and control the data would not be a workable solution for this business.

When this was raised with us, we suggested using IoT SIMs in the devices. This new solution gave the ability to see what data was being used and when it was being used. They were able to get alerts on high usage; see a report at the end of each day showing each device usage and what it was costing real-time. 

This is one of the many benefits they experienced, others include the rates Zest4 were able to secure from our network partners enables us to offer a solution at lower price than they were paying for  the MBB sims before any overage. The customer took a 30-day trial of 30 IoT SIMs to test drive the concept.

By using the daily sessions reporting they could drill down and see the start time, stop time and data used in every session. By doing this it was clear that there were a number of large sessions taking pace when the cabs were static and had no customers on board. It turned out it was the drivers that were streaming videos etc. when they were off duty or waiting for a fare. The actual customer usage was well within the expected limits. This enabled the business to stop this unwanted behaviour and make sure the service was always available for customers without any bill shock or unwanted bills.

The numbers behind this experience make for interesting reading. The initial 30-day experience with the network MBB bills cost almost £2500. The initial 30-day service using the Zest4 IoT SIM cost just over £400. A huge difference, a huge saving for the business.

Folloing the initial 30-day trial, the customer has rolled out more than the initial 30 devices and is now using a four network UK roaming sim so that there is always a connection available.

Lesson of this story? Don’t always assume that a Pay as You Go SIM or a Mobile Broadband SIM will be the answer to your connectivity requirements. What may seem cost-effective initially, may not always be the best solution.

Talk to me, let me know what you need and I’m sure I can model the right bespoke solution that will hit the spot for you.

By Anton Le Saux – https://www.linkedin.com/in/anton-le-saux-a5b4a311/

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