IoT SIM cards

Our IoT SIM cards will keep control of your mobile assets with no down-time or blackspots in connectivity. Get fail-over device management for business-critical connections.With access to our online management portal for real-time reporting, where you can set and monitor data alerts and caps you’ll be in total control of your whole SIM estate.

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What is an IoT SIM card and How is it Used in IoT Devices?

The Internet of Things, or IoT, is the definition used to describe the physical ‘things’ (objects) that have the ability to process, sensors or other technologies that can connect and exchange data with other ‘things’. M2M refers to point to point or machine to machine connectivity whereas IoT is the internet extending into machines.

These ‘things’ connect and exchange data over the internet and other communications networks (3G, 4G, 5G etc).

Traditionally a SIM card runs on one mobile network (a consumer SIM) however, for IoT / M2M there are multiple choices including multi-network roaming SIMs available. Where a Smartphone connects to one network, an IoT SIM card will connect to multiple networks to ensure connectivity is maintained at all times.

If you are looking to control, measure or monitor an asset, you’ll use an IoT device (‘thing’) that needs guaranteed connectivity through 3G and 4G SIMs with managed data. Whatever you’re looking for Focus Group can supply you with the right SIM card for the right deployment.

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IoT SIM cards benefits

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Global network coverage

A mutli-network roaming SIM will enable your asset to travel globally with no interruption. Multi-Network Roaming SIMs are key to making sure that an IoT or M2M solution is operating at maximum efficiency and remains connected. These SIMs access all available networks switching between them to make sure that connectivity is at its strongest at all times.

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Greater durability and flexibility

With a lifespan of up to ten years, your IoT device can be deployed across the harshest of environments and still remain connected. With a multi-network roaming SIM your devices will be covered globally, one bill and one data plan. Unused data can be pooled for the following month.

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More security options

IoT SIM cards connect via a secure private APN, an additional element of security for the data transfer as this offers significantly more security than Public APN, which uses the internet. Only SIM subscriptions that are authorised by our network will be provisioned onto an APN gateway. A private APN is not accessible to any other subscriber. SIMs will be issued with a Fixed Private IP that can only be accessed via a secure APN that is provisioned by us to only allow access from authenticated users.

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Remote management

With our portal, you’ll be able to access and control your SIM estate 24/7, add or remove bars and see real-time analytics. Configuration changes and data caps can be provisioned remotely and securely but only by approved admin users that have been set up and verified within our secure network. Via the portal there is access to real time data utilisation and visibility both inbound and outbound of connected devices. Having visibility of the data utilisation allows for real time monitoring and the ability to control cost in real time.

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Eraditcate switching costs

By utilising SIMs that connect to multiple networks or SIMs that can be re-provisioned OTA it allows remote changes to network access and usage plans. It also reduces the need to physically swap a SIM if the chosen network is not available in an installation location. The SIM estate can be aggregated to share a pool of data which means if specific devices need more data than others there will be no need to swap the SIM as the data from another device can be utilised.

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Traditional sim cards used in everyday consumer smartphones are designed to function in moderate conditions with little tolerance to the stress from vibrations, extreme temperatures and other hazards your device may face in the workplace. IoT SIM cards on the other hand can tolerate cold, heat, and harsh environments, making them more robust and reliable when used in a hands on working environment.

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Frequently asked questions

A SIM card that can connect to more than one network, deliberately choosing the network with the strongest signal at any one time.

IoT SIM cards work through connecting to the strongest network, they can seamlessly move between UK or global networks to make sure that your assets are always connected.

A regular SIM, like those which you use in your Smartphone, will connect to one network (O2, Vodafone, EE etc). An IoT SIM card has the ability to switch between networks (either within the UK or globally), so that you stay connected all the time.

IoT SIMs use a private secure APN, as opposed to a standard, shared MNO one. This allows only devices with the right credentials to connect to your network, unlike traditional cellular, where you and anyone else with the same carrier as you, are using the same network. The SIM card will have a Fixed IP address that will allow internet breakout from our secure private network whilst protecting any unauthorised inbound traffic that is not coming in via the secure VPN.

When installing an IoT SIM card for the first time there will be a requirement to set up and programme the device with the secure APN details and various other security measures to ensure it works on the secure private network. As long as when switching the SIM to a new device it is set up accordingly with the APN and security details there should be no restrictions to transferring it to another device. If the device is not set up with the required information the SIM will not work.

Just as with a ‘normal’ SIM card your IoT SIM card should last up to ten years, as long as it doesn’t get damaged or exposed to the weather.

If your device is dual SIM compatible it might be possible to have two SIMs in one. You could use this option if you had a separate number for your business and home.

This depends on your SIM card choice, depending on the device or deployment will depend on if you should use dynamic IP address versus a static or fixed one.

As standard most IoT SIM cards do not support Voice and SMS traffic. However, we have agreements in place with some of our network suppliers to allow small amounts of voice and SMS traffic to be utilised on the network. This is available on request, please ask us for more information if you need it.

IoT SIM cards are to be provided for use in physical objects with sensors, processing ability, software and other technologies that connect and exchange data with other devices and systems over the internet or other communications networks. As long as the SIM is provisioned and used in this manner there are no restrictions or limitations.

The only requirements form a device to be able to work with an IoT SIM is the ability to be able to set up the APN and connectivity details. If a multi network SIM is being used then there will be a requirement for the device to be set up to use network roaming.

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