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Mobile operators back GSMA embedded SIM rules

Steve Rogerson
October 15, 2015
Indosat, Tele2 and Telefónica Vivo are the latest mobile operators to launch commercial products based on the GSMA Embedded SIM specification for the remote over-the-air provisioning of M2M devices such as smart meters or connected cars. The specification is now backed by 23 mobile operators and 11 operators worldwide have launched commercial products.
The adoption of a single, common and interoperable specification will reduce fragmentation and help the industry to take advantage of the fast-growing IoT market, estimated to be worth US$1.1tn by 2020.
“It is clear that the industry is united behind this global standard which allows mobile operators to provide scalable, reliable and secure connectivity for a range of diverse services such as smart meters, traffic lights and home security, among many others,” said Alex Sinclair, chief technology officer at the GSMA. “With commercial solutions already available today, we encourage additional operators and ecosystem players to adopt the specification in order to capitalise on the tremendous market opportunity enabled by the IoT.”
GSMA Intelligence research highlights that nearly 75 per cent of global M2M connections are now serviced by mobile operators that are deploying or are committed to the GSMA specification. Analyst firm Machina Research has also published research confirming that embedded SIM connections will account for 25 per cent of the embedded share of gross cellular additions by 2020.
The latest release of the specification includes a feature called profile interoperability, which enables an operator to create a SIM profile that can then be downloaded to any compliant eUICC regardless of the manufacturer. This feature will allow operators to connect a greater number of M2M devices, opening up the market, reducing fragmentation and providing additional commercial flexibility for original equipment manufacturers and M2M service providers.
The GSMA has also released more test specifications to give assurance that products have the correct security levels and are compliant with the specification.
• California-based GTX is to use Telefónica Germany's global smart M2M platform and relationships across Europe. The agreement enables GTX's patented GPS SmartSole and other GPS and cellular tracking and monitoring devices to be deployed across the globe using one SIM card and provisioning backend platform.
"Our smart M2M platform is a perfect ready-to-use solution that will enable GTX to manage their global connectivity processes without having to invest in M2M development and IT infrastructure,” said Helmut Schnierle, head of M2M sales at Telefónica Germany. “With Our API, GTX will be able to easily integrate their backend with our smart M2M platform.”