National Roadmap for IoT/M2M in India

After considerable deliberations, the Indian government has released a roadmap for governmental support and for regulating Machine to Machine (M2M) communication in the country. Several initiatives have been taken in the past regarding M2M/IoT in India but they have remained highly fragmented or sector focused so far. This policy document would be a step in the right direction to ensure that the industry follows a standardized approach towards deployment of M2M services.

The following is a summary of the proposed National roadmap:

  • All M2M service providers utilizing telecom facilities from authorized TSPs should have a MSP (M2M service Provider) registration.
  • Ownership of SIMs shall be with M2M service provider and the details of all the end-users should be maintained by M2M service provider.
  • Foreign SIMs would not be permitted in the devices to be used in India. Devices which are imported may use embedded or soft SIMs, where TSP profile/ IMSI can be updated over the air. Alternatively, manufacturers of M2M devices may tie up with Indian TSPs for equipping them with Indian SIMs
  • M2M customers may get the option of changing TSP without the need of a physical SIM replacement
  • Current regulations will continue to remain valid with regards to device/data security and roaming arrangements
  • All M2M services shall be based on IP based technology. On network side of M2M, the communication should be over Internet protocol (IP) only, so that everyone adopts common standards.
  • In the interest of national security, all M2M Gateways and application servers, which are servicing the customers in India, need to be located in India only.
  • DoT would consider de-licensing/allocating certain spectrum band for M2M connectivity in addition to the existing CSP network
  • TEC (Telecommunication Engineering Center), the technical arm of DoT would be taking necessary steps for developing India-specific standards for M2M and creation of infrastructure for test-beds and product-certification.
  • DoT intends to promote pilot projects around M2M directly and also through proposed Center of Innovation across Industry verticals.
  • TRAI is also considering changes to the licensing regime for the introduction of virtual network operators(MVNO)
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Let’s hope that this triggers greater interests in driving large-scale IoT deployments in India.

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