AT&T Pushes For IoT With IBM Partnership And Starter Kit

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AT&T goes with IBM Bluemix and Watson for developers and releases budget IoT kit for businesses

IBM and  AT&T are working together to further their Internet of Things agenda, combining IBM’s Bluemix cloud, Watson IoT platform and AT&T’s own IoT platform.

Strengthening this strategy is the launch of a $99 starter kit and the availability of AT&T’s IoT software on Microsoft Azure.

The combined suite will be hosted on IBM’s cloud, and it is claimed the main goal of the marriage to make IoT platforms more interoperable. Developers working at their respective companies will also get access to more analytics from connected devices.

Interoperable

“Now, developers can use open standards-based tools, cognitive computing and global connectivity services on the IBM Cloud to quickly build and implement widely compatible IoT solutions,” said IBM.

With access to AT&T’s data, IBM developers will get more visibility and understanding into the “things” they are actually connecting. IBM gave the example of an asset tracking app that has the ability to not only show the location of an asset, but to also couple that with weather data.

IBM“Businesses would then be able to predict delays in the supply chain and reroute deliveries due to bad weather,” it elaborated

Adding the Watson Speech API into the mix would then enable operators of these assets to use the ‘hands-free’ driving capability to monitor engine performance in real time to help avoid breakdowns.

Starting out

The announcement is the second in as many days regarding IoT for AT&T. At Cisco Live this week, the company launched an Internet of Things starter kit aimed at developers. The company claims the piece of kit will help businesses make use of IoT in the real world, as it comes with LTE hardware, cloud storage, and application services.

According to Frost & Sullivan analysts, by 2020, between 20 and 50 billion devices will be connected to the Internet and to each other. This poses significant traffic and network challenges for telecoms companies, and AT&T knows it needs to be prepared for traffic surges.

While researching technology that is specifically made to connect IoT devices to its 4G LTE network, AT&T is also pandering after developers with its recent announcement. The company further launched tools to help developers built IoT platforms on Microsoft’s Azure cloud.

“We want to fuel innovation in the IoT industry,” said Chris Penrose, senior vice president, AT&T IoT Solutions.

“Using Azure we’ve created a one-stop shop for developers to turn ideas into solutions. They now have platforms, connectivity and cloud services in one package to launch products and support their developer ecosystem.”

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