Digicel Group uses IoT-X to manage customer connectivity
When Digicel required a connectivity management platform to enable it to provide connectivity services to the 33 M2M markets throughout the Caribbean, Central America and Asia Pacific regions, it turned to the IoT-X platform from Stream Technologies – which now benefits from additional technologies from Starhome Mach.
Digicel Business required a connectivity management platform that could be integrated into existing network components such as provisioning application programme interfaces (APIs), billing and the core network for the Digicel Group roaming SIM card offering. The central requirement was to enable the Digicel Group to offer its roaming SIM solution to its subsidiary networks and enterprise customers via individual instances of the connectivity platform. This would allow each local Digicel operator to on-board and manage its own customers.
In addition to subscriber management and billing services, Digicel required an element of managed connectivity to facilitate the creation of private access point names (APNs), segregated customer traffic and intelligent IP routing in order to open up new business opportunities in the M2M and IoT market.
What was the answer?
The IoT-X solution involved deploying a Digicel branded instance of IoT-X onto Stream and Starhome Mach’s existing US infrastructure and integrating all of Digicel’s core components to fit its business processes and requirements for multi-tenant architecture for their 33 subsidiary networks.
“Progressive carriers like Digicel are hungry for multi-technology, access agnostic solutions because IoT requires more than just activating a SIM card,” says industry analyst James Brehm. “The adoption of IoT-X places Digicel squarely among the most innovative network operators in the IoT marketplace.”
The deployment included:
• The IoT-X Enterprise Interface, which allows Digicel’s end customers to manage their account and subscribers.
• The IoT-X Customer Management interface, which allows Digicel support representatives to create, manage and support customers and their SIM cards if required.
• RESTful Enterprise APIs, which allow customers to integrate elements of the platform into their own applications. This includes custom branded API documentation which is hosted online for ease of use.
• RESTful Management APIs, which enable the automation of provisioning and customer account creation.
• IaaS (Infrastructure as a Service), which facilitates managed data transit and RADIUS services.
These core components were then integrated into Digicel’s core network through the following means:
• Integration into Digicel’s existing billing system to facilitate the provisioning of SIM cards onto the home location register (HLR) and produce call data records (CDRs) for each subscriber.
• Integration between Digicel’s core network and Stream’s APN infrastructure to facilitate authentication, authorisation and accounting for each subscriber.
• Integration into two packet gateways to provide a geographical and resilient connection to facilitate the transit of data from each subscriber to the internet or customerapplication.
How was IoT-X delivered?
The platform was deployed within an eight-week time-frame, which ranged from the project kick-off to the first Digicel customer being deployed on IoT-X. The rapid deployment of the solution was accomplished through tight project management and clear requirements gathering supported by the agile integration properties of IoT-X. Following on from the deployment and integration of the platform, Digicel is provided with managed service support around successful onboarding and billing of Digicel’s end customers during a crawl, walk, run phase.
What Were the Results?
As a result of deploying IoT-X, the Digicel Group is now capable of targeting previously unattainable markets through its Jamaica based sales teams or via any of its 33 subsidiary networks.
Each network can easily create new customer accounts, apply flexible tariffs that can be tailored and allocate SIM cards to customers. The end customer is able to manage their account and subscriber lifecycle process themself. At the end of each month, billing information is reported to each Digicel network and this information can be integrated into third-party invoicing systems to generate the end invoice for M2M services.
These capabilities have allowed Digicel to create the following business offerings:
• M2M Managed Connectivity
• M2M Security Services
• M2M Smart Metering
• M2M Vehicle Services