Tom Nolle/CIMI Corp.
14 Apr 2011
While the missions of facilities monitoring applications differ, they share a common architecture. Monitoring as a service requires three elements:
1. Sensors installed at the site;
2. Communications connectivity with the sensors;
3. Operations processes to monitor output and take appropriate action.
In most cases, deploying operations processes to monitor and take the right action creates both the largest component of cost and the greatest opportunity for differentiating a facilities monitoring application.
Network operators routinely deal with millions of connected customers and monitor millions of smart elements. The operational efficiency and economies of scale that existing OSS/BSS platforms could generate, combined with the use of smarter monitoring technology to issue proactive alerts based on specific conditions (rather than continuously reading parameter values), can create a highly efficient facilities monitoring service framework. That framework enables operators to price the service low enough to be attractive to the mass market and still be profitable to the operator.
Operators are also more trusted to monitor applications than any other class of provider. Some surveys even show that network operators would be a preferred source of power management tools, since consumers fear that power companies might unnecessarily tinker with power usage to serve their own interests.
Because network operators can credibly perform all facilities monitoring applications, their likely ARPU from investments in this class of application would be higher, and the larger number of customers could further improve their economies of scale, allowing them to be price leaders.