Spark Digital, formerly Gen-i, has launched a new cloud platform that helps businesses to automate machine-to-machine (M2M) deployments.

The service - Connected Mobility - unleashes the Internet of Things (IOT) for businesses that need to manage smart objects in a wide range of environments, says Andrew Leckie, principal architect, Spark Digital.

Leckie announced the new service at this year's MobileTECH, where he explained how it relates to the trend for IoT, where "the physical world becomes one large information system".

"We're already surrounded by intelligent sensors that measure environments, personal gadgets and appliances. M2M services like Connected Mobility extend this idea and provide businesses with remarkable control over product and service experiences," says Spark Digital head of mobility Richard Adams.

He says while New Zealand businesses are moving to connect their physical world and include this information in their networks, they're often hampered by having to physically manage individual objects. "Businesses are essentially running blind. They must shift to automated systems that provide better visibility and control. Self-service is key," says Adams.

The foundation of Connected Mobility service is a cloud-based control centre, where administrators launch and manage thousands of mobile SIMs contained in physical objects and devices. Simple controls and rules mean new SIMs can be tested and activated, rate plan changes can kick in automatically if data caps are exceeded, and alerts can be sent if connections are lost.

Spark Digital forged a partnership with ThingWorx so Connected Mobility customers can use its rapid application development platform to build apps that connect systems, sensors and devices.

"We're providing businesses with autopilot controls that will streamline SIM management," says Adams. "We expect they'll be able to solve 90 per cent of their own support questions, getting their objects back online faster and providing a more reliable service."

Spark Digital says it plans to add features including voice, 4G LTE integration and a global SIM offering to the service.

Send news tips and comments to [email protected]

Follow Divina Paredes on Twitter: @divinap

Follow CIO New Zealand on Twitter:@cio_nz

Sign up for CIO newsletters for regular updates on CIO news, views and events.

Join us on Facebook.

Read more:Beware of the data lake fallacy: Gartner