By Claire Wanja
Airtel has partnered with Flickswitch International, a leading provider of self-service solutions for enterprises to launch an enterprise SIM management service in Kenya.
Flickswitch complements Airtel Kenya’s bouquet of Machine to Machine (“M2M”) solutions by providing an online portal for enterprises to manage their mobile connectivity.
In partnership with Airtel, Flickswitch has now launched SIM control, an online self-service portal that provides enterprises with the tools to manage their mobile connectivity effectively.
The administrator can create business rules, tailored around the usage of their phones or devices.
Flickswitch is now able to supply enterprises with bulk Airtel SIM cards, registered and delivered within a matter of days.
The business can then create the custom rules on SIM control for each batch of SIM cards and activate as and when needed. The best part of the offering is that there are no long term contracts involved. Businesses can only spend what is available in their account. If a customer project comes to an end SIMs are simply suspended.
With Flickswitch’s SIM Control platform, administrators receive automated email notifications when SIMs are recharged, reached a limit or when recharges fail for whatever reason so that they have complete control over their SIMs. All data such as SIM information, recharge reports and usage is displayed online and available for download which allows the business to evaluate their spend and tweak the business rules accordingly.
“Airtel understands the changing SIM management needs of businesses. The rapid growth of connected devices within many industries means that companies need to manage large numbers of SIMs. Our partnership with Flickswitch is just another way that Airtel is making sure its business clients have access to the best SIM management offerings” said Airtel Kenya CEO Adil El Youssefi.
The Internet of Things (“IoT”) will ensure that every industry will eventually find a need for devices to be connected. Within this complex eco-system of sensors, devices, platforms and solutions, information needs to be transferred. The preferred, most generally available connectivity method is the mobile network, especially on the African continent.
The SIM card is usually not on anyone’s mind when solutions are developed and tested. But during deployment, enterprises come face to face with a range of challenges. These include how much data has the SIM consumed to date, whether the SIM is still in the device and how problematic SIMs can be suspended.
“Technology companies in the M2M/IoT space have a whole array of challenges to contend with before taking a solution to market”, says Danie Olivier, Director for Flickswitch Kenya.
“We are building from our experience in supporting 100,000 SIMs for more than 550 Enterprises, largely in South Africa. Kenya is known for its tech innovation, and Flickswitch is excited to provide managed mobile connectivity to both startups and established enterprises in Kenya.
“Startups prefer the nature of prepaid mobile connectivity to test solutions before taking them to market, as these can be sourced anywhere and topped up from another phone or the web”. “Once you start rolling out solutions that includes tens to hundreds of devices, managing the funds on prepaid SIM cards becomes a big challenge” says Olivier.