Collaboration with Software Entrepreneur Ray Ozzie Intends to Drive the Next Wave of Low-Power Cellular Connections

What if the valuable equipment or critical infrastructure that you rely upon in your business were seamlessly connected to the cloud, enabling problem detection, diagnosis, and control from afar? What if you could deploy that connectivity with simple setup and configuration for your customers?  And integrate it so economically that it could just pay for itself? And improve security by taking your devices off the public Internet once and for all?

AT&T* is collaborating with Ray Ozzie, former CTO and Chief Software Architect at Microsoft, and his new company  Blues Wireless to make this happen with a new game-changing product.

Notecard™ is a System-on-Module (SOM) that combines prepaid cellular connectivity, low-power hardware design, simple software design, and secure communications into a single solution. AT&T will provide the connectivity.

Notecard will enable developers of a broad range of commercial and industrial products to embed connectivity that just works, near globally. Battery-powered, fixed, or mobile, nearly any product can be easily cloud-connected and highly secured.

The need is pervasive for connected devices and assets in business, in the field and even in homes. Today, things like washing machines, dishwashers, construction or oil rig equipment are coming off the assembly line fully equipped for connectivity, but actual connection rates are low because of their reliance on Wi-Fi.

Take home appliances as an example. Some manufacturers report low adoption rates because of complexities inherent in Wi-Fi. Multiple steps are required to register the product, deal with firewalls, download apps, manually pair devices with the network and keep them connected. Without a compelling reason to do so, consumers simply may not have the time and patience. Help lines (and relatives) can be overwhelmed with calls seeking assistance. Costs can build for providers.

Notecard just works when embedded within a vendor’s products, with no user configuration required. It fits neatly into a range of IoT devices. No monthly cellular subscription is needed to stay connected.

Think of the potential. Notecard makes it possible to economically connect things like home appliances, alarm systems, meters, tank level controls, construction equipment, HVAC systems, locks and gates, vending machines, and more, including applications that can improve operations and provide supply chain transparency.

Notecard will operate on AT&T’s LTE-M and soon-to-launch NB-IoT networks.

 “Notecard will be an immensely compelling solution for businesses looking to economically cloud-enable their products and to gain deep visibility into their operations. Integrating cellular can now be even easier than Wi-Fi. But what I’m most proud of is that it’s a simple experience that developers will love,” said Ozzie.

“Our low-power wide-area networks over LTE are built for IoT, delivering better indoor coverage, longer battery life and other efficiencies. Notecard will make it easy and economical for our business customers to put IoT solutions to work,” said John Donovan, CEO of AT&T Communications. “It’s been great teaming up with Ray to develop this all-in-one solution to help unlock the potential of IoT.”

Watch for more details in the coming months on the pricing and availability of Notecard.