Q&A: Vodacom Executive Head of Mobile Products, Gabi Strijp

Having recently launched a Global Data Services Platform (GDSP) in South Africa, Vodacom’s Executive Head of Mobile Products Gabi Strijp tells HumanIPO about the savings businesses will make through using Africa’s first M2M management platform.


HumanIPO: Is the platform the first in South Africa/Africa? 

Gabi Strijp: Yes, it is the first MNO global SIM management platform in Africa 

How will this facilitate businesses in an African context? 

It allows South African businesses with devices either homed or roaming into Africa a greater degree of control over those SIMs.

Is there a limit to how many devices a business can link to on the platform? 

The platform was built to support the “Internet of things”. There are over 5 billion unique IMSI numbers that are available. This will support the business well into the future.

What sort of savings do you estimate companies might experience if they implement the new offering?

Typically companies that have tens or hundreds of thousands of SIM cards have teams of people managing and monitoring the contract periods, usage and provisioning of the SIMs. These functions can now be done by the systems used in the Global Data Service Platform.

The GDSP is a closed loop system with no internet break-out. This means that security is provided from SIM theft and fraud.

 For customers manufacturing products, GDSP provides free “test” data that allows them to test their device/s and keep it on the shelf in a “live” state until it is needed free of charge.

Following on from the previous point, this facilitates a seamless deployment of the connected device. For example, if a GDSP SIM is deployed in a smart electricity meter the customer does not need to plan which SIM needs to be activated. Any device can be issued and turned on in a working state in the field.

Do you have an outline of costs/tariffs that will be applicable to customers? 

Yes, the monthly subscription per SIM is R10, data usage is charged at R0.30 per MB in South Africa (roaming rates will apply outside of South Africa) and SMS at R0.22 per SMS.

Posted in: FeaturedTelecoms

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