It’s up to us to connect the world and remove barriers to IoT businesses, says 1NCE CEO

1NCE, which launched at this year’s Mobile World Congress (MWC), is now bringing connectivity to thousands of IoT devices. The company’s recently opened webshop is now enabling an unparalled easy onboarding of customers to its unique flat fee 500MB IoT connectivity offering. Here, Alexander Sator, the founder and chief executive of the company, tells IoT Now how the company’s vision has been realized and customers are benefiting from the simplicity of the offering. This could only have been developed by IoT natives, he says.

IoT Now: You’ve recently launched the 1NCE webshop. How has that gone and are customers embracing the concept of transacting simply online for IoT connectivity?

Alexander Sator, the founder and chief executive of 1NCE

Alexander Sator: We have built up our whole product including all systems and processes from scratch within seven months and the webshop has gone according to plan and is now exactly as we announced it at the MWC in Barcelona in March.

No one outside of 1NCE believed or hoped that we would be able to do this in the timeframe and now, – here we are. We have one-of-a-kind connectivity webshop that allows our customers to purchase an IoT grade SIM card with a 500 MB data allowance and 250 SMS included for €10. Customers can purchase just one or millions of SIM cards – all online within a couple of clicks. There are no limits, nor any hidden fees. Therefore it’s up to the customer if they want only a few cards for testing or several thousands or more. Exactly this is happening at the moment within the webshop – we are seeing customers trying our cards before they go for larger amounts but we’re also seeing customers going for the large buckets of cards right from the start.

IoT Now: How does the process of onboarding customers work?

AS: Every customer orders our product in the same way – that’s one of the beauties of the system. After having filled the online order forms they get an invoice immediately and we send out the cards after we have received the payment. Since each card is already activated there is no need for any further registrations. The customer also gets immediate access to our connectivity management platform where they can immediately see the status of their shipment, the amount of ordered SIMs as well as how to configure and setup the connection to our network. And that’s everything – it’s all you need to start connecting your IoT devices.

IoT Now: Please can you tell us how trials with pan-European test clients have gone?

AS: Well, it’s amazing, we have already deployed approximately 10,000 test cards among our clients all over Europe with great success. Everyone was happy with our capabilities, especially because we are able to deliver seamless multi bearer capabilities which has enabled us to build up connections almost everywhere in Europe and the US utilising almost any host network.

In addition to that we had some customers in Germany that were testing our narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) capabilities here. It has worked perfectly from the very first moment.

Other customers have told us that our SIM card has established a connection to the cellular network even faster than anyone else before, which was very satisfactory feedback for us.

Naturally, our test customers have helped us to fix some bugs and address some setup issues. We highly appreciate this valuable support which has enabled us to build the reliable product we were able to commercially launch in August.

IoT Now: You describe yourselves as IoT natives – what does that term mean to you?

AS: Each member of the 1NCE management team has worked in the IoT market for a long time prior to joining 1NCE. I myself have been active in this market for almost 20 years now. We founded 1NCE because we all knew about the challenges and obstacles that our customers are facing. So we developed the 1NCE Lifetime Fee which is the answer to many problems. Typical among these are that customers don’t know what total cost of ownership (TCO) they could expect for the lifetime of their devices, which bearer would be best to use and how much data or SMS their application would require over the coming years.

Our product eliminates the complexity of multiple tariff plans or extra fees. Many IoT customers do not exactly know what they will need, but we know because we had all those insights thanks to our experience in this market. This is why we only provide one offer that covers all of the necessary requirements to start an IoT business.

IoT Now: How important is it to practice what you preach and run your business with an IoT model from product to technology and customer journey?

AS: We have created a product purely dedicated to IoT customers. Connectivity can no longer be a hurdle to prevent IoT businesses being started. This is why we have streamlined and automated all steps and processes to get IoT devices connected. It starts with the order process which you can do with only four clicks. Also each customer has easy access to our platform and to our knowledge base. We have a first level support that helps with the onboarding and setup processes. This is how I would have liked to have got my devices connected ten years ago but, because there wasn’t any progress since then, I thought: okay – it’s up to us to connect the world

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