Chapter 2

The Business of M2M

Harish Viswanathan

Alcatel-Lucent, New Jersey, USA

The term M2M is quite broad and refers to many different vertical markets, diverse communication technologies and potentially a large geographical scope. M2M has the potential to enhance existing processes in many industries, such as healthcare, automotive, manufacturing, energy, retail, and public safety, to name but a few. Similarly, in terms of technology, M2M applies to numerous short-range wireless communication technologies, such as ZigBee [1] or Zwave [2], that connect sensors via a more intelligent gateway or router node, to wireline technologies, such as X10 [3], to wide-area supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) networks designed for monitoring and control of the power grids, to radio frequency identification (RFID) tags employing near-field communication technologies, and to aspects of wide-area mobile wireless networks, such as CDMA, GPRS, UMTS, and LTE networks and satellite communication networks. As a result, estimating the number of M2M devices currently deployed, and their potential for growth, is no simple task. The geographical scope of M2M solutions can be both local and global, as in the case of multinational trucking/shipping companies tracking their fleet across a continent, or a small apartment with remotely controllable appliances networked to an energy-management control application running on a local home server. Despite such a broad scope, there is indeed a common ...

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