NTP 2018 To Be Transformative For M2M Communications : Telecom Secretary

As the new telecom policy of India, NTP 2018, is being drafted and will be in public domain in next few weeks, telecom secretary Aruna Sundararajan said it will have provisions to incorporate new technologies like M2M communications. She said the new policy would be transformative in harnessing the full benefits of M2M technologies.

“M2M is the next big opportunity for India in terms of its impact and the quantum change that it will bring about in the quality of services and delivery. The favourable impact of M2M on job creation had already set in as seen by the arrival of the first set of start-ups in areas such as agriculture, smart cities, healthcare and water management,” said Aruna Sundararajan while addressing an industry session organised by FICCI and EY.

During the event FICCI and EY alsso launched a report – ‘M2M- changing lives of 130 crore+ Indians’.

While launching the report which provides inputs to the government on M2M communications to help formulate the M2M policy framework, Sundararajan said that in the M2M framework the focus would be on low cost manufacturing, where exciting innovation is already happening.

Machine to Machine (M2M) communications supported by cross-industry collaboration are expected to have a fundamental impact on the way we live and work, reduce waste, improve health and meet other major social and economic needs such as security, transportation and logistics, education and energy.

M2M communications are also set to change the way businesses operate. The ability to use and capitalise on the data collected by M2M is helping companies build and sustain competitive advantage. Companies are using M2M to find new revenue streams, improve margins, productivity and customer experience, and foster innovation.

Proliferation of M2M is attributed to advancements in semi-conductor technologies and decline in the cost of sensors, both of which are the building blocks of the M2M ecosystem. The government’s ‘Make in India’ initiative has the potential to further bring down hardware costs. With the current growth momentum, M2M connections are likely to reach 429m by 2021.

“This report by FICCI and EY on M2M provides detailed inputs on all aspects of the IoT potential, business models and regulatory regime that are currently under consideration by the government in the run-up to the proposed NTP 2018. It represents the views of a broad section of cross-sectoral members,” said Virat Bhatia, Chairman, FICCI ICT & Digital Economy Committee.

“A progressive policy framework has the potential to nurture transformational M2M growth in India and aid long-term sustainability for the players. For M2M to achieve its full potential, it is imperative to identify the right level of regulation which enables the larger ecosystem and sectors to connect, collaborate and innovate. M2M is a multi-billion opportunity for India and can change the lives of ‘Aam Admi’ in this country,” said Prashant Singhal, Emerging Markets Technology, Media & Entertainment and Telecommunications (TMT) Leader and Global Telecommunications Leader, EY.

The FICCI-EY report notes that considering the dynamism and diversity of the ICT sector of India, there is a huge growth potential of M2M and related businesses. The M2M communication technology has the potential to not only transform business for enterprises, but can also empower millions of lives through benefits derived through useful applications across industry sectors. At present, M2M services have started expanding in India, and require enabling regulations, falling cost of the overall M2M services and devices and innovative services for the masses, to reach its true potential.

The primary value proposition of M2M communications is its ability to transcend various industry verticals and support multiple use cases. Automotive and transportation, Power and utilities, oil and gas, manufacturing and healthcare are likely to lead M2M adoption in India. M2M can overcome numerous challenges such as delivering improved healthcare to the larger population.

The report states that for M2M communications to achieve its full potential – it is imperative for the larger ecosystem and sectors to connect, collaborate and innovate. With the NTP 2018 on the anvil, a favourable regulatory environment will be critical in the success of M2M. Swift periodic adjustments to accommodate cross sectors and newer use cases will lead to sustainable M2M growth.

Gyana Ranjan Swain

Gyana Swain has been tracking the technology industry for over 15 years. A business journalist turned entrepreneur, he has founded two news portals- TeleAnalysis and M2MCafe.

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