Exclusive: Verizon Beefs Up ThingSpace With Big Data & App Store
Verizon Communications is set to extend its ThingSpace IoT platform with two new key features that look set to expand its developer ecosystem.
The first feature is "Marketplace," an app store that allows Verizon's partners to share and even sell their own IoT solutions.
The second new feature is a commercial expansion, horizontally, of Verizon's big data analytics engine across all verticals.
Mary Beth Hall, director of IoT operations for Verizon, told Telco Transformation that both developments are part of Verizon's strategy of unifying every single resource the company and its partners have to offer in a grand push of the telco's IoT vision as it seeks IoT market dominance for ThingSpace.
First, there's the Verizon IoT app store that ThingSpace developers and Verizon partners will have the opportunity to take part in.
"Verizon has an existing partner program and will leverage that for the IoT community [via] Marketplace," said Hall, who explained that Marketplace will provide partners with the ability to sell their application via the Marketplace.
Second, Verizon will be expanding access to its analytics platform to partners and developers on ThingSpace. Hall described the analytics capabilities as the other "differentiator... that will be coming soon as well," continued Hall. "We're [already] able to get analytics when it comes to IoT devices... what's neat about that is that the possibilities are endless."
No exact launch date has been set but the launches will come soon. "I can't really give you a timeframe for that because there's some other nuances that we're working with individual customers on," Hall said, "but it will be coming soon... in a future release."
When Verizon Communications Inc. (NYSE: VZ) first announced ThingSpace last year, the company said it was commercializing its data analytics platform for IoT in its October 28, 2015, press release.
While Verizon's analytics tools have been incorporated into IoT deployments in a limited way to date -- most notably as part of its agricultural pilot platform working with Hahn Family Wines -- the company will now bring it to all of its developers via ThingSpace as part of its DevOps-empowerment strategy.
Hall described this approach to ThingSpace's continued evolution as triple-pronged. In conjunction with Marketplace and making its analytics available across the board for IoT developers, Verizon previously announced it was opening up all of its APIs and other assets to developers so that the full power of the telco can be readily at the hands of anyone and everyone on the ThingSpace platform. (See Verizon's ThingSpace Opens Up APIs for IoT Developers.)
These three new ThingSpace developments, Hall explained, are necessarily intertwined as part of Verizon's long-term strategy for the next five years.
"If you think of the power of putting [those assets] all under one umbrella and simplifying the development to create applications end-to-end, that's what we are looking to build when it comes to ThingSpace," Hall said. "We are going continue to evolve it [via these] three areas where we're seeing the differentiator, [and] we'll continue to evolve those. The Marketplace, the ability to have all the Verizon assets be available for IoT developers, and then that data analytics [engine] all in a robust platform... we'll continue to grow out those areas so that whether you're a developer, a partner, or a customer, you're gonna be able to take advantage of it in one platform."
— Joe Stanganelli, Contributing Writer
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