Lenovo ‘empowers IoT’ with embedded Vodafone data SIMs

Vodafone has a “multi-year” deal with Chinese tech firm Lenovo to provide global IoT connectivity to Lenovo devices. The arrangement is between Vodafone Business, Vodafone’s international business division, and Lenovo Connect, Lenovo’s connectivity management business; it will start, from May, with Lenovo devices sold in Spain, but will expand to cover 40,000 devices in European countries in total, the pair said. It is understood Vodafone is supplying 4G and 5G IoT data SIMs.

A statement said Lenovo customers will have “secure… on-the-go” connectivity on laptops and various smart devices via the company’s Lenovo Connect App. Vodafone will provide a global IoT data (GDSP) SIM, to fit into each Lenovo device and integrate with the app. It said: “To comply with country specific regulations, the two companies have focused on a local communications service model, overseen by a global IoT management platform.”

Initially, Vodafone Spain produced a customised version of the company’s managed IoT connectivity platform to manage local connectivity and service compliance. The product will be copied for other countries, and support IoT roaming into global markets. Lenovo Connect offers data and analytics solutions – to “empower the internet of things”. It focuses on interactive devices and connected vehicles, and is “actively exploring 5G application scenarios”.

The partnership reinforces Vodafone’s “leadership in IoT connectivity”, it said; it claims to have 159 million IoT SIMs in the market. It reinforced that IoT remains a growth segment, in volumes at least, quoting Allied Market Research that the European IoT industry will reach $12.3 billion by 2031, growing 19 percent from 2022 to 2031. The pair said they will provide “intelligent solutions to… improve [enterprise] efficiency, productivity, and competitiveness”.

Vinod Kumar, chief executive at Vodafone Business, said: “Our purpose is to help organisations digitally transform their business with a unique level of service and expertise. In collaboration with Lenovo Connect, we will deliver a resilient and customised pan-European service for customers built on fast connectivity and greater privacy and security.”

Wang Shuai, vice president at Lenovo Group, said: “With the rapid iteration of technology, the development of future intelligent IoT will undoubtedly have enormous potential. Lenovo Connect and Vodafone will leverage technology, complementary resources, and platform integration to build higher-quality international intelligent connectivity services to help enterprises embark on their digital and intelligent transformation journey.”

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