IoT technology to revolutionize the future for smart cell sites

My Tech Mag March 2020

IoT technology will transform the business of smart cell sites, be it the operation, maintenance or management thereof. IoT.nxt, innovators in IoT technology and strategy, has devised a solution that will make all the difference. This is done by overlaying a hardware agnostic data collection layer that will talk to any hardware, be it cutting edge or 20 years old. “Our solution does not require ‘rip and replace’, as it overlays our data collection layer on top of the base station operator’s equipment, thus preserving the existing infrastructure,” says André Strauss, IoT.nxt Chief Commercial Officer: Sales.

IoT.nxt creates one single view of all segregated systems which makes it possible for the mart cell site operator to view all systems, be they central or distributed, from a single viewing platform.

Once the four-level infrastructure is in place, IoT.nxt’s AI and analytic tools are used to determine patterns in all measured sensors such as temperature fluctuations, battery recharge time, or equipment failures.

“We can detect smart cell sites (base stations) that are outside the normal behaviour and need to be checked out before they fail. By tracking the internal temperature and comparing it to the air conditioner behaviour and run time we can detect unnecessary energy usage,” Strauss says.

Read more here: https://bit.ly/39h5i1G

Expect big things from Vodacom in 2020

By Jamie McKane 27 December 2019

Vodacom has had a great 2019, cementing its position as the biggest mobile operator in the country.

Vodacom shows no signs of slowing down next year, as it plans to launch a number of new initiatives and expand its existing offerings.

Speaking to MyBroadband about its vision for 2020, Vodacom said that South Africans should watch out for big new developments.

“There are a lot of exciting developments planned for the new year, which will continue to improve customer experience on the Vodacom network – stay tuned!” Vodacom said.

These include developments of financial services and Vodacom’s OTT services.

Vodacom said that it expects big things to come from its financial services division, especially on the back of its partnership with Mastercard earlier this year.

“There is certainly a lot more to come from Vodacom Financial Services,” Vodacom told MyBroadband.

“Earlier this year, together with Mastercard, we launched the VodaPay Masterpass – which enables Vodacom customers to load bank card details into a digital wallet that can be downloaded as an app on a smartphone.”

The network noted that smartphones were being used for financial transactions more frequently in South Africa, and it would evolve its platform to accommodate this.

“As digital wallets gain popularity, we realise the need to offer our customers solutions that will enable them to adapt to the future of commerce,” Vodacom said.

“With so many of our customers now using smartphones, it makes sense to make it easier for them to pay for airtime and data, and conduct a wide range of payments at their favourite merchants, all from a single app – and we will be adding even more features to the platform in the new year.”

Vodacom did not expand too much on its plans for its video, music, and gaming OTT platforms, but it did say it expects massive growth from the services.

“Our video, gaming, and music offerings will evolve and grow exponentially while we are also expecting exciting things from our IoT.nxt acquisition in the year ahead,” Vodacom said.

Experienced IoT strategist joins IoT.nxt

MEDIA STATEMENT

Centurion, South Africa. 09 December 2019 As its global expansion accelerates, innovators in IoT technology IoT.nxt appointed experienced strategist Shane Cooper as Chief of Operations this month. Cooper joins IoT.nxt from the Vodacom Group, where he served as Managing Executive of Strategy.

“Shane has a deep understanding of the possibilities of IoT technology and strategy for enterprise and his insight and vision will help us drive our entry into new markets and territories. He has had a close relationship with the IoT.nxt team and was central to discussions that led to Vodacom’s acquisition of a majority stake in IoT.nxt earlier this year,” says IoT.nxt CEO, Nico Steyn.

According to Cooper, who first encountered IoT.nxt shortly after the company was founded in early 2016, it was IoT.nxt’s focus on innovative edge technology that attracted his attention. “This set the company apart from what many others in the fast-growing IoT industry were developing at the time. It was revolutionary, as everyone else was talking about the cloud,” Cooper says.

“IoT.nxt has great potential to expand its operations and become a leading global IoT company, proven by Vodacom and Vodafone’s interest. Beyond that, IoT.nxt has also registered the attention of the likes of consulting giant Gartner and leading tech companies like Dell, Microsoft, Fujitsu and ADTRAN.

“This is further validation that we are heading in the right direction, but also brings with it the pressure to constantly remain ahead of technological developments. And thanks to the Vodacom shareholding we now have the funding and support to accelerate the building of a global company,” notes Cooper.

As Chief of Operations, Cooper will drive the company’s global expansion by being alert of and mitigating growing pains that start-ups typically encounter in the journey to become truly international organisations.

At Vodacom Cooper was responsible for strategy for the Group, which included all operations across the Group in all territories in which it operates. His key focus was to devise strategy that positions the company for the future, as the core telecommunications offerings matured, and new opportunities and expanded services were prioritised. The digitalisation of business and guiding enterprises on that journey was a critical focus.

Cooper holds a MBA from Heriot-Watt University, a B.Com Accounting from the University of Port Elizabeth and completed a B.Com Honours (Accounting) degree at the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

ISSUED BY: IoT.nxt

For further information please contact:

Daleen van Wyk
Media Liaison
Tel: +27 83 302 0827
Email: [email protected]

Further accolade for IoT.nxt at TT100 2019

29 November 2019

Innovators in Internet of things (IOT) technology IoT.nxt won the Management of Technology Award for Medium Enterprises at the annual Da Vinci TT100 awards presentation this month, adding to its impressive list of accolades achieved since the company’s establishment late in 2015.

In addition to its win in that category, IoT.nxt was a finalist in all categories of the TT100 award programme, launched in 1991.

For the Management of Technology, the judging panel considers the ‘tools’ and metrics organisations use to gain competitive advantage. Simplistically, it is “a way of doing things better” and may involve the use of anything from computers and hi-tech, to project management processes, to simple handheld tools. In this context, we refer to the small “t” in technology where organisations manage their technology to best position their products or services to maximise their market share.

“IoT.nxt’s trademarked edge device, the Raptor, is a game-changer for IOT solutions. We believe that this, combined with our technology-agnostic approach and the ability to retrofit any legacy equipment at any company in any industry secured the award for us. We are very proud of this achievement and it confirms our belief that our innovate approach is world-leading,” says André Jacobs, Director of Product Engineering at IoT.nxt.

“When we entered in 2016, IoT.nxt was still in start-up phase, yet we received recognition as a finalist in the category for innovation for small enterprises. Now, three years later, our company is well established, we have international offices in Europe and the USA and a proven solution. It is testament to the dedication of our team and the innovation culture that remains strong,” Jacobs says.

Earlier awards for IoT.nxt:

Microsoft 2019 Partner of the Year, Independent Software Vendor (ISV)
2019 Gartner Notable Vendor for IIoT
Enterprise solution category winner and overall winner of the MTN Business IoT Award 2017
Gartner Aspiring Innovator 2016

African CIOs look to IoT for critical infrastructure applications

By Heath Muchena  14 November 2019

While the internet of things is disrupting industries and creating new ways of doing business globally, technology executives at this week’s Africacom conference in Cape Town are highlighting how in Africa, IOT is focused on critical, often life-saving, utility, agricultural, transportation and infrastructure applications.

IoT is essentially a network of connected devices that collect information and provide a stream of data that can be analyzed and acted on. Industrial connected systems have been around for years, as sensors on factory floors connected manufacturing equipment. The big difference now is that connected devices are no longer the province of industrial niches.

South African-based mobile group Vodacom, for example, is investing heavily in IoT and has acquired a majority stake in IoT.nxt to develop applications for the automotive, mining, agriculture, finance and consumer markets.

IoT addresses regional challenges

A notable difference in the way IoT projects will be rolled out in Africa compared to Western countries is the nature of the use cases, often specifically developed to address regional challenges. Examples include solar lighting management for communities living off the grid or real-time weather applications that assist crop farmers.

Creating solutions that are suitable to Africa’s environment and infrastructure issues – such as a its fragile power grid, is crucial. For example, GSMA research shows that as mobile IoT technology becomes more widely available, there is an opportunity for entrepreneurs to leverage new cellular Low Power Wide Area (LPWA) network technology. These networks are designed for lower cost IoT applications that use low data rates, need long battery life and are typically in remote locations. This is ideal for applications like smart-metering and decentralised utility service models. Nonetheless, there are still currently few mobile IoT networks in the African emerging markets.

Read more: CIO

Vodacom Group H1 revenue rises 3.9%

Monday 11 November 2019 | 09:37 CET | News

Vodacom Group revenue increased by 3.9 percent to ZAR 44.39 billion in the first six months to 30 September from ZAR 42.71 billion a year earlier, supported by group service revenue growth of 4.2 percent. The group added 2.7 million customers in South Africa and international operations and 2.7 million at Safaricom during the period, giving it a combined 115 million customers. Net profit rose by 20.8 percent to ZAR 8.19 billion from ZAR 6.79 billion in 2018.

Headline earnings per share (HEPS) increased 18.9 percent to ZAR 4.60 from ZAR 3.87 in 2018 due to the one-off BEE costs of ZAR 1.5 billion included in the prior period. Earnings per share were up 19.4 percent.

The interim dividend per share declined to ZAR 3.80 from ZAR 3.95 but there was also a special dividend of ZAR 0.60.

EBITDA increased by 4.2 percent to ZAR 18.17 billion from ZAR 16.53 billion in 2018 and capital expenditure rose by 19 percent to ZAR 6.35 billion from ZAR 5.33 billion in 2018.

International operations continue to perform well, delivering service revenue growth of 15.5 percent with foreign currency translations boosting reported group growth.

Vodacom adopted IFRS 16 on 01 April with the cumulative retrospective impact reflected as an adjustment to equity on the date of adoption. Looking ahead, Vodacom expects the benefits of acquiring a strategic stake in IoT.nxt will become increasingly evident in both consumer and enterprise businesses.

Vodacom’s profits rise as it grows customer base in South Africa

Staff Writer 11 November 2019

Vodacom on Monday (11 November), reported an 18.9% increase in headline earnings per share for the six months ended September 2019 – to 460 cents per share – amid strong customer growth.

“We added 2.7 million customers in South Africa and our international operations, and 2.7 million in Safaricom during the period, to serve a combined 115 million customers across the group,” said Vodacom Group chief executive officer, Shameel Joosub.

Group revenue was up 3.9% to R44.4 billion, supported by group service revenue growth of 4.2%, to R36 billion.

“South Africa service revenue grew 0.3%, supported by the turnaround to growth in the second quarter, as the reduction in out-of-bundle revenue was offset by improved data elasticity and the completion of the full onboarding of our new roaming partner,” Joosub said.

International operations continue to perform well, delivering service revenue growth of 15.5% with foreign currency translations boosting reported group growth, the operator said.

Earnings per share were up 19.4% and headline earnings per share were up 18.9%, due to the one-off BEE costs of R1.5 billion (including transaction costs) included in the prior period.

Vodacom declared an interim dividend of 380 cents per share and a special dividend of 60 cents per share.

Other key highlights include improved second-quarter performance in South Africa and the sustained growth of our international businesses, said Joosub.

“In South Africa, an increase in data usage, following sustained efforts to reduce data prices and the onboarding of our new roaming partner in the second quarter, more than offset the service revenue decline reported in the first three months of the financial year.

“On a like-for-like basis, this resulted in service revenue growth of 1.5% during the half-year, despite ongoing economic pressures and the implementation of the End-User and Subscriber Service Charter regulations,” the chief executive said.

Ongoing initiatives to enhance customer experience through pricing transformation, modernisation of IT systems and sustained investment in network infrastructure, continue to pay dividends, he said.

“This is evidenced by the additional 691,000 customers who joined Vodacom in the period,” Joosub said, taking South Africa’s customer base to 43.9 million.”

Measures to introduce ‘one more service’ to customers, as part of its strategy to build diverse revenue streams, are quickly gathering momentum.

Revenue from its financial services business jumped by 37.1% to almost R1 billion, as airtime advance, insurance and our recently launched VodaPay service all gained in popularity, Vodacom said.

“More than one million people have made video-on-demand purchases, while our music, sports, games and other video services – all in their infancy phase – are contributing to solid growth in our digital services business,” Joosub said.

Vodacom said that its international portfolio remains a star performer, growing service revenue by 15.5% in a period characterised by macro and political stability and high demand for data and M-Pesa services in each operation. ”

We connected an additional 2 million customers, boosting the total to 36.6 million customers outside South Africa and Safaricom,” Joosub said.

Looking ahead, Joosub said: “We expect the benefits from our acquisition of a strategic stake in IoT.nxt[2] will become increasingly evident in both our Consumer and Enterprise businesses. The same can be said for the other partnerships we have put in place in recent times, including our agreement with Amazon Web Services (AWS), to ensure we bring best-in-class services and products to customers right across the group”.

Read more: BusinessTech

Vodacom Could Spend R1bn to Buy IoT.nxt

digital revolution

Gugu Lourie November 11, 2019

Vodacom has disclosed on Monday that it could spend as much as R1 billion to acquire Internet of Things (IoT) innovator IoT.nxt.

In May, Vodacom announced plans to buy 51% stake in IoT.nxt for an undisclosed amount to enhance its current IoT offering.

The Vodafone-owned mobile phone firm disclosed on Monday that it bought the 51% stake in IoT.nxt for R1 billion, of which R469 million was settled in cash, with the remainder being contingent on the future performance of the business.

IoT.nxt creates data-connectivity between new data sources and legacy systems which allows for real-time data availability across a wide business segment.

The effective date of the acquisition was 23 August 2019.

“The acquisition of IoT.nxt will help in accelerating the Group’s internet of things (IoT) strategy, and take advantage of the significant opportunities within the IoT space,” Vodacom said.

Looking ahead, Vodacom CEO Shameel Joosub, said the company expect the benefits from its acquisition of a strategic stake in IoT.nxt will become increasingly evident in both Consumer and Enterprise businesses.

Vodacom also reported that its IoT connections rose 14.2% to 4.6 million for the six months ended 30 September 2019.

IoT technology is transforming the world of business, retail, heavy industry, and our personal lives.

Research from Gartner has estimated that there will be over 6.4 billion connected things in use in 2016, increasing to around 20.8 billion by 2020. Business will need to adapt their practices on a mass scale to accommodate the deluge of connected solutions.

IoT.nxt is South Africa’s fast-growing innovator in IoT technology.

The IoT firm, which was founded by Nico Steyn and partners Bertus Jacobs and Terje Moen in Centurion at the end of 2015, opened its first fully-fledged office in Europe in The Hague, the Netherlands in 2017.

IoT.nxt has developed an edge to cloud IoT platform that enables rapid IoT implementation as the main underpin for enterprise digital transformation. IoT.nxt’s unique Raptor edge gateway technology and gateway management software integrated into its end to end Web-Commander software stack clearly differentiates it from its competitors.

The platform allows for a top down or bottom up digital transformation approach and is an enabling technology for all of the large IoT platform and big data players, as is evidenced through the company’s many commercial applications across many industry verticals where customers were using MS, SAP, IBM or GE, to name a few.

Read more: TalkIoT

Fujitsu RunMyProcess Seamlessly Connects People and Things with DigitalSuite Business Fabric Ecosystem

3 November 2019 ACN Newswire

MUNICH, Nov 4, 2019 – (JCN Newswire) – Fujitsu RunMyProcess, the high-productivity cloud platform, today introduces DigitalSuite Business Fabric, a connected and collaborative ecosystem designed to enable digital business innovation. By providing seamless access to information from the Internet of Things (IoT) devices, DigitalSuite Business Fabric makes it easier than ever for enterprises to effectively leverage new sources of data.

Data from IoT-enabled devices provide powerful new insights – both in terms of information that was previously impossible to collect on a wide-scale basis as well as deeper insights into established processes. For example, IoT devices can capture manufacturing sensor data and send them to the cloud, then convert them into visual representations and dashboards, providing an early warning if a machine needs maintenance, proactively avoiding a breakdown.

Access to this information is the new frontier, so businesses can effectively interrogate and act on the data they are collecting, to create new value. DigitalSuite Business Fabric is a new ecosystem designed to streamline this crucial connection between people and things. Partners already include Citrix, IoT.nxt, and Okin Business Process Services.

RunMyProcess DigitalSuite, Fujitsu’s proven low-code software as a service (SaaS) platform, is central to enabling businesses to make the connection between people and things. Easy-to-consume business processes are integrated across digital domains, while Okin Business Process Services provides the delivery power for enterprise project implementation.

Partner Citrix provides the “people” side of the ecosystem. Citrix Workspace ensures workers enjoy unified and secure access to all applications, content across multiple data sources, and best-in-class security on any device, all accessible from anywhere.

On the “things” side, the partnership with IoT.nxt enables RunMyProcess DigitalSuite to integrate IoT data from many diverse devices into a wide range of enterprise applications. Data can even be gathered from devices with non-standard protocols. Available instantly, this data is displayed in a user-friendly format, unlocking new efficiencies in business processes.

Hiroshi Yazawa, CEO of Fujitsu RunMyProcess, comments: “Fujitsu RunMyProcess has built strong relationships with major digital partners to enable organizations to reach their full potential. With DigitalSuite Business Fabric, we leverage our expertise and that of our partners to challenge the limits of the possible and help enterprises with cutting-edge tools that maximize their business outcomes.”

Diane Fanelli, Vice President, Global Systems Integrators at Citrix adds: “Our partnership with Fujitsu is a natural fit as we share a people-centric approach to powering a better way to work that delivers benefits to both end-users and IT alike. The RunMyProcess DigitalSuite platform and the Business Fabric ecosystem provide seamless access to powerful features and functionality that streamlines solutions, minimizes downtime, and boost employee productivity while empowering individuals to choose when and where they work, on their preferred devices, and we are pleased to help fuel this through integration with Citrix Workspace.”

Jason Bradlee, COO Americas at IoT.nxt says: “Almost all businesses have IoT data, but not all are able to fully take advantage of it. We bridge the gap by translating all device data and making it available. By connecting this information to the broader Business Fabric ecosystem, the possibilities for leveraging it are huge. From the new solutions and services that can be created to a new value that can be generated for customers and businesses alike. All accessed via a single platform.”

Read more: Benzinga