The cloud platform and data storage are worthless without hardware to provide connectivity and deliver the data of the Internet of Things (IoT).
Compass Intelligence thanks Zach Supalla, CEO of Particle for contributing to Inside the Transforming Enterprise, CIO.com blog.
"Welcome to the world of IoT “solutions” without hardware. While a cloud platform and data storage are important parts of the IoT stack, they’re worthless without hardware to actually provide connectivity and deliver data. IoT platforms that don’t include hardware typically wave this away by telling their customers that they can develop their own hardware solutions. Many even try to sell their absence of hardware as a plus. They use the (admittedly clever) marketing term, “hardware agnostic”, to suggest that the lack of hardware “frees” their customers to use whatever hardware solutions they want." READ MORE (the full article)
About Zach Supalla
Zach is the founder and CEO of Particle, an IoT startup that’s making it easier to build, connect and manage internet-connected hardware on an enterprise scale.
Zach launched Particle on Kickstarter in 2013 with the vision of making the Internet of Things easy and accessible. Particle has grown to have the largest developer community in the Internet of Things with over 125,000 engineers. Particle devices are used at 50% of the Fortune 500 and ship to more than 100 countries. Particle has been featured in WSJ, Forbes, Wired, Engadget, Fast Company, TechCrunch, the Discovery Channel, and many other publications. Zach has spoken as an authority on Agile Hardware and the Internet of Things at prominent events such as OSCon, GMIC, and Launch.
Zach earned an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management and an MEM (masters in engineering management) from the McCormick School of Engineering at Northwestern. Before Particle, Zach worked as a management consultant with McKinsey & Company, advising Fortune 500 companies on strategy, operations, and product development. He is a graduate of HAX, the world's first and most prolific hardware accelerator.
The current U.S. smartphone market reached 331K total smartphones by the middle of this year. While the market continues to grow, there remains an entire black market that the industry continues to fight against. The OEMs, carriers, insurance providers, resellers, and trade-in companies much continue to evaluate the common practices taking place in the black or underground market. Consumers continue to seek ways to get their devices at a lower cost, which has given even more growth to the secondary device marketplace. The secondary marketplace is where you can go buy a new, used, or refurbished device from a person (private seller) or local shop (Craig's List, Facebook Exchange group, eBay, Pawn Shop, local 'mom and pop' reseller, etc.), an online vendor (Gazelle, Amazon, Gamestop, Bestbuy), and through your manufacturer or carrier. When buying through an individual and or online site (one of the more obscure ones), you are more likely to open the door for problems.
Factory Unlocked Devices or Unlocking of Devices
Before factory unlocked devices, there were 3rd parties you could pay to unlock your device and make it "ready" to be used with a given carrier. You could essentially take the SIM card out of your old phone and pop it into your new used phone and have the ability to choose your carrier of choice as opposed to being "locked" into the one carriers. Keeping in mind, not all unlocked phones work with your carrier of choice and many came with other issues and problems that made it more of a hassle. Consumers would pay for this service, before the carriers and the OEMs began offering the factory unlocked devices into the marketplace. Today, carriers offer factory unlocked devices. This means you can buy a Verizon phone and possibly use that phone on a Sprint network. The carriers actually have customer service representatives that can help answer questions about which models will work and the steps needed for a seamless experience. Sprint and Verizon use a CDMA network while T-Mobile and AT&T use GSM. Because not all phones will work on another carrier's network (due to network technology, versions, etc.), it is always best to call the carrier or look up the list of approved devices on their website.
Stolen and Black Market Phones
The market also put measures in place to help protect consumers and devices that were stolen or made available in the black market. If a user purchases a stolen phone from someone on Craig's List or other private seller market, buyer beware. Many of these secondary market devices are at risk of being included on the "blacklist" that carriers are responsible for blocking. This is done by performing a database search for the IMEI (International Mobile Equipment Identity) or ESN, and if the IMEI/ESN on the purchased device is included on the list of devices that are stolen or still on a device payment plan, then the carrier is responsible for blocking all calls and services. According to Kim Komando, "You can check to see if a phone has been reported as lost or stolen. Follow the instructions from the free international IMEI blacklist checker."
However, hackers will always have the upper hand. In these cases, you can pay up to $100 for example to have a 3rd party go out and assign a new IMEI to your device (both Apple and Android), therefore giving it a clean IMEI to be used with the carrier. These 3rd party hackers guarantee their services as well. PLEASE NOTE, changing an IMEI number is illegal. Essentially the hacker remotely takes access of your smartphone and downloads the operating system, performs the magic and replaces the IMEI with a working one. Also, these hackers are able to get into cloud accounts and even password protected smartphones.
For more information about protecting your smartphone, contact your carrier.
AT&T and Verizon pick up some steam, while T-Mobile Makes Adjustment in Wholesale Numbers
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