We manufacture a monitoring instrument, within which we have embedded a GPRS modem. Depending on sampling rate, data volumes from the instrument are a maximum of ~100KB per day and can be as little as 10KB. The instrument can buffer the data to FTP upload at user defined intervals, the GPRS modem is disconnected and powered down in between upload cycles to conserve power.
In the past we have left the responsibility of the SIM card provision to the customer but this brings with it setup and support issues. We also want no ongoing responsibility for the data connection provision.
For a while we have been supplying the instrument with GO-SIM PAYG roaming sim card. This is to get the customer up and running and as a reference sim card for any support issues. For some customers particuraly within EU the data rates worked out acceptable so they stuck with them. In recent months they have increased their minimum connection charge from 0.05$ to 0.50$. As our transmissions are usually well under the minimum charging limit we were generally only charged for the connection and not for a volume of data.
So what I am after:
Global Roaming SIM.
Ability to pre-charge with $nn credit that doesnt expire.
Low or no minimum connection charge
Customer ability to recharge/manage ongoing credit.
I would probably be looking in the first instance at wanting to purchase 50-100 units.
That sounds challenging Jim. You may need to provide some commitment on the roll-out potential over the next 12 months to get the price plan you need.
For that number of units, I would try VAR rather than the mobile operators direct.
Are the majority of those SIM's going to be in a single or specific countries in Europe? If so, taking the any EU roaming aspect out of the deal could make a big difference.
I am head of GSM accounts at Aeris Communications and I would love to speak with you more about your monitoring solution. Aeris provide cellular connectivity on a global scale for GSM/GPRS and CDMA. We have built out our core network elements from the ground up exclusively for machines and therefore have a higher quality of service while maintaining lower cost.
We have the ability to do customize rate plans and are flexible with billing (annual, month-to-month, pre-paid, post paid, etc) whatever works with your business model or your end customers business model.
10-100KB a day is in our sweet spot, as we to bill to the nearest kilobyte.
If you are interested, please feel free to email me at Marissa.Iovino@aeris.net
Looking forward to hearing from you!
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