The structure of the machine-to-machine (M2M) market today is such that solutions are nearly always customized for a specific vertical market or application. While there is a need for a modest amount of vertical customization, the market can move toward a much more standardized model in the areas of connectivity enablement, hardware platforms, and middleware software. Echoing this direction, Nathan Johnston, principal technology architect at XATA said, “We made a conscious decision to stop developing our own platforms, and I think that this type of strategic decision is a growing trend among developers.” Mr. Johnston was describing his company’s approach to fleet operations management system development at a recent M2M Roundtable in Las Vegas sponsored by Ericsson.
Providing an alternative to proprietary platforms, the Intel M2M Reference Design supports standards-based technologies, including the F5521GW mobile broadband module* from Ericsson. The reference design spares system developers from designing a board from scratch and mastering the complexities of wireless technology, making it easier and less costly to create M2M applications. With a footprint the size of a credit card, the design supports a variety of wireless connectivity and delivers the computing performance required for M2M applications.