Published on August 15th, 2013 | by Alexis Argent0
4Gon Interview Sierra Wireless about their M2M Product Lines, 3G Routers, 4G Routers and Future Plans for the Company
4Gon: Broadcasting from various countries around the world, using wireless technology, this is 4G Uncovered – A 4Gon Solutions UK podcast. I am Kathleen Reed. Joining us today is Brian Anderson, Vice President of Marketing for the Solutions and Services Business Unit within Sierra Wireless. Sierra Wireless is a global leader in machine to machine devices and cloud services delivering intelligent wireless solutions that simplify the connected world. A part of this podcast is even being recorded over a wireless link. Thank you for joining us today, Brian! Can you please give our customers a brief introduction on Sierra Wireless and its range of products?
Brian Anderson, Sierra Wireless: Sierra Wireless is focused entirely on the M2M market now. We have 3 product lines: AirPrime, AirLink, and AirVantage.
AirPrime is our module, communication module, that you put inside of an M2M device to have it kept cellular connectivity in the network. So that might be put in the car, or it might be put on meter, it might be put in a coffee machine (we have a customer in espresso that uses modules that way).
Then we have AirLink, which is we created an integrated gateway box with those modules included. Then it also has standard I/O like serial connectivity, ethernet connectivity I/O, and things like that. They can be used to put into some existing products that are out there in the field or vehicle and give you that connectivity that way.
And then, AirVantage is our cloud-based software solution that lets you manage those modules and AirLink Gateways in the field. It also lets you collect data from them to drive your business applications; integrate it into your back-end systems or create new interactive applications, web applications, mobile applications.
Brian Anderson, Sierra Wireless: Well, those are our main AirLink products, and they are great, easy way to get started with connectivity using cellular 3G connectivity. They are very quick and easy to deploy (we’ve made them very simple to use). They are also rugged so they can last for years in a harsh environment; they’ve got standards about how the vibration, dust, and water are resisted. And they’re designed to be easily connected to the cellular network and then stayed connected. As you know, as you use your phone and you go around between places, your signal drops in and out or you made a drop of calls, and things like that. Well, when you want to have this connectivity, you want to make sure it stays up as much as possible. So as long as the network is up, we’re going to make sure you’re connected in the network and make sure your data is transmitted correctly.
Also, these models are monitored and managed by the AirVantage Cloud Service, which I mentioned earlier. Which lets you configure and deploy and monitor these devices; field over the air. So you can view things like ‘Manage Configuration’, make software updates to them, just get alerted if there’s any issues with their up time, and also gives you that ability to integrate the data that’s collected into your back-end systems. Specifically, the GX400 is a 3G product that is expandable through something we call X-Cards. So it had the basic setup connectivity built in for ethernet and serial, but you can expand it with more ethernet ports, you can expand it with a WiFi Hotspot capability, and you can expand it with additional I/O capabilities. The LS300 is our contact rugged router, small form factor, can be used in industrial type applications and really easy to deploy in the form factor it has.
4Gon: Great! So you have a number of 3G routers, can you tell us about your 4G routers?
Brian Anderson, Sierra Wireless: Oh, yes! We do have a version of the GX called the ‘GX440’, which is a 4G router and has LTE technology. We support, in the US, the Verizon and the AT&T LTE networks. They also failback to HSPA+/HSPA and fallback to 3G networks as needed. But when the coverage is really increasing, it’s a great choice to really take advantage of the high-speed of 4G connectivity. And also, the 4G, it gives you lower latency so it’s just faster in every way and more efficient. So we’ve been selling millions since last year and they’re very popular given the expansion of the LTE networks in the United States.
4Gon: OK, so what does Sierra Wireless have planned for the future?
Brian Anderson, Sierra Wireless: Well, we will continue to be a leader in the M2M market. We always keep up with the latest communication technology. So as LTE standards evolve, you’ll see us producing the latest standards there. We always keep up on the latest high-speed capabilities in our modules, in our gateways, and our AirVantage, it’s a cloud-based point so we continue to improve it quarterly. I’m inviting you to go to developer.sierrawireless.com where you can check out all of our offers in the technical detail and also even try out a free trial of AirVantage – you could try that out there as well.
4Gon: I really want to thank you for your time today, Brian. Brian Anderson is a Vice President of Marketing for the Solutions and Services Business Unit within Sierra Wireless. This has been a 4G Uncovered podcast, brought to you by 4Gon Solutions. For more information, please visit www.4Gon.co.uk.
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