Bharti Airtel, an Indian telecom company, has launched always-on IoT connectivity, which includes dual profile M2M e-sims that allow an IoT device to always stay connected to a mobile network from different operators.
The technology meets the AIS 140 standard developed by the Automotive Research Association of India (ARAI) and implemented by the Ministry of Road Transport and Highways (MoRTH). This establishes mandatory connectivity and GPS tracking requirements for devices in all passenger-carrying buses, private fleets, and other public transportation vehicles for tracking, safety, and security.
All registered buses and taxis are required by law to install this device. The Indian government recently made it mandatory for vehicles transporting hazardous goods to have an AIS 140-compliant tracker installed. There are also emergency vehicles such as ambulances, vehicles from the mining and construction industries working in remote locations, and other mission-critical and intelligent communication use cases that require higher network availability and reliability.
Airtel says it expects to acquire market leadership in this segment in the coming year’s thanks to its GSMA-compliant platform, flexible API-based e-sim lifecycle management on its IoT hub, and compliance with Department of Telecom (DoT) M2M guidelines.
“We are delighted to bring always-on connectivity to our customers,” said Ajay Chitkara, CEO of Airtel Business. “We believe this is the next big opportunity in the IoT segment. Our strengths in the network, modern and GSMA compliant platform offering real-time access to data and flexibility to integrate with custom APIs will make Airtel Business stand out in the market.”
Some companies, including Lumax ITuran, Loconav, and e-Trans, have already tested and adopted the AIS 140. Lumax ITuran Telematics serves the Indian automotive industry with telematics products and services. LocoNav is a fleet-technology company that has over 5 million vehicles on the road in over 50 countries. While e-Trans offers vehicle tracking through its pan-India network.
Airtel has over 490 million customers spread across 17 countries in South Asia and Africa. It is India’s largest integrated communications provider and the country’s second-largest mobile operator.