The ‘IoT Connectivity Support Platform’ is a critical piece of middleware deployed by Communications Service Providers (CSPs) to handle the activation, management and billing for the cellular connectivity upon which IoT devices rely. The vendor market is dominated by two main third-party vendors (Cisco and Ericsson). Many CSPs have their own in-house developed capabilities which are either their exclusive platform (as is the case with Verizon and Vodafone) or which are used alongside those of third parties (as done by Deutsche Telekom and Telefonica).
A recent report ‘Communications Service Provider (CSP) IoT Peer Benchmarking 2020’ (September, 2020) examined the strategies of ten leading connectivity providers for IoT. Each profile contained a Middleware section which included, amongst other things, an examination of each’s Connectivity Support Platform strategy.
This report expands upon those sections, looking at the emerging trends for Connectivity Support Platforms, including the changing dynamics for multi-sourcing of platforms, their increasingly cloud-native nature, the impact of API-ification, the arrival of 5G, OpenRAN and eUICC, and changing commercial models.