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Transitioning from Analog to Cellular

Many M2M customers are considering making the transition from analog to cellular but may not be sure what that entails. Compare the process and requirements below to see if making the jump to cellular makes sense for your business or your customers.

analog-cellular-with-towers.png

Steps:

  1. Confirm system can support Cellular connections (data packets via IP). If the system is analog only alternative options include using “COM port redirector” software to send the data from a COM port to a network port.
  2. Determine and acquire best hardware for the application based on features needed:
    • GPS - Asset Management or Fleet Tracking
    • Persistent Connectivity - Remote Maintenance & Control
    • Intelligent Terminal - Environmental Monitoring and Security Systems
    • Modem Speed (2G/3G/4G) - Failover & Out of Band Management
  3. Acquire data package and SIM through MVNO or other Cellular Provider that will support area needed for services
  4. Configure and install new devices for testing
  5. Rollout new configuration and devices once fully tested and approved

Advantages compared to Analog

  1. Communicate directly to server or host - no modem required on receiving end
  2. Recurring monthly charges typically much lower
  3. Already designed to receive data over the network
  4. "Smart" modem includes additional functionality beyond just communication - configure alarms and sensors, track assets, and in some cases no need for additional processing or the need to attach a computer
  5. GPS functionality allows new applications that include location tracking such as asset management
  6. DC cables make this modem mobile and usuable anywhere there is a cellular connection and available battery connection
  7. Integrators and resellers that offer remote management services can control the relationship with the service provider, no longer relying on the customer to pay and maintain telephone services