Defining Success for Public IoT Networks
What does it mean to be successful as a public IoT wireless provider? Success, in any business including public IoT networks, is using each resource to its maximum revenue potential. For wireless networks, the vast majority of resources are spent on infrastructure (and in cellular’s case, licensed spectrum). These infrastructure costs include site acquisition costs such as zoning and permitting, power conduit, physical access point installation, the initial field deployment costs, backhaul (the service that transmits the data back to the provider from the access points or APs), and the recurring lease for space on the tower. These costs scale along with the network. These costs are applicable to any technology aiming to operate as a public wireless network provider. The exact details of how the infrastructure costs break down vary some from region to region, but the overall pattern is the same.
Scenario 1: Paying for Success
Building and profitably running a public IoT network is no cheap endeavor. Success is found in using the infrastructure across as many paying customers as possible. The paying customers are devices in a public IoT network. And, the number of paying customers is determined by the capacity (or data throughput) available at each access point. An important side note here that the reader should understand is that many LPWA wireless technologies like to talk about the number of address spaces an AP has as capacity. That misses the mark. A useful benchmark of capacity is the number of messages of a given size (e.g. 32 bytes) that can pass through an AP during a given time (say one second).
A useful benchmark of capacity is the number of messages of a given size (e.g. 32 bytes) that can pass through an AP during a given time (say one second).
Those messages can be divided amongst devices according to their data needs. If each device needs a lot of data, then fewer can be served in a given time interval. If each device needs very little data, then more devices can be served in that interval. This is real-world capacity and is how any wireless technology should be compared apples to apples.
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