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By 25 July 2019 | Categories: news

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It seems like you cannot turn around without hearing about the Internet of Things (IoT), as, along with the cloud and artificial intelligence, it is one of the emerging technologies talked about frequently. However, much of the discussion around IoT tends to revolve around the technology’s use in cities, businesses or industry. What about IoT in the consumer space?

Answering that question very directly is Vodacom, which recently launched its V by Vodacom range of devices that leverages IoT particularly for use by the ordinary man on the street. The devices are particularly geared towards enabling people to monitor their home, their kids, their pets and their possessions when they are apart. Furthermore, it also enables users to connect their compatible home and leisure IoT devices to the Vodacom dedicated global IoT network using a dedicated IoT V-Sim.   

More specifically, the “V by Vodacom” range includes the V-Pet tracker, V-Kids Watch tracker, V-bag tracker and a V-Home Safety starter kit with a multipurpose sensor, siren, HD camera and a mobile Wi-Fi hub.

The cellular IoT products owe their connectivity to a dedicated V-Sim card, and GPS device tracking, delivers notification alerts when your pets, kids or possessions move outside of a virtual fenced area and a V-Home monitoring service as part of the V-Home Safety Kit.

Beyond fostering a basic sense of safety and security, the executive head of consumer IOT at Vodacom, Saloshni Muthal, noted that the V by Vodacom range could also have use cases for the likes of energy and utility management.  As well, its wearable product could be used to keep family appraised of an elderly family member who may have fallen and in need of assistance, medical or otherwise.  

 “The risks to the safety and security of our homes and family members are something we all worry about daily and want to ensure that with V by Vodacom, South Africa’s leading mobile network operator is able to empower customers to keep track of the things they love. In this way, Vodacom remains committed to transforming the lives of all citizens via the application of new and innovative technologies,” she elaborated.

Muthal reassured that setting up its IoT products does not require advanced knowledge or a degree in computer science. Rather, its starter kit, and the  products it contains, have been designed to be highly user friendly. As to the pragmatics of deploying the V by Vodacom devices, Vodacom offered the process in a nutshell:  

  • Users will need the dedicated consumer IoT sim or “V-Sim” which is provided with all cellular V by Vodacom devices and sold at Vodacom stores. These can also be purchased on their own as sim only subscriptions for those customers wanting to connect their existing consumer IoT devices.
  • The “V by Vodafone” smartphone app, then provides customers with a single, intuitive overview of V by Vodacom products and sim only IoT subscriptions registered to their account. Setting up each product is simple: customers scan a QR code on the sim product packaging to register and with a few short steps they are activated.
  • Simple and easy payment methods which include a monthly subscription fee which is added to the monthly bill of existing Vodacom post-paid customers and is deducted from the airtime wallet from existing Vodacom prepaid customers. Non-Vodacom customers will be able to use their credit for subscription payments in the near future. 
  • A single, affordable fixed monthly price plan for each product connected by a V-Sim

More information on the new products can be found here As well, you can watch Muthal explain the new products, the prices and the potential of the V by Vodacom range below.

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