Telco deep dives into IoT, aims to disrupt automotive sector: Digital Malaysia

'Connected Vehicles' is being touted as a key IoT business driver by a Malaysia-based telecom, which is also looking to disrupt the motor insurance sector.

By AvantiKumar
June 13, 2017

cityscape-and-skyline-KL- Public domain

Photo (Public Domain) - KL cityscape


  In the IoT arena, machine-to-machine (M2M) connectivity is now seen as a prerequisite for maximising business performance as well as a major factor for gaining competitive edge.

Within the 'new normal' business environment of IoT in Malaysia, solutions which layer intelligence on top of M2M connectivity are poised to become a key driver,  according to  several commentators. (See - What's really in store for Malaysia's IT industry in 2017?)

More specifically, connected vehicles and insurance telematics have been identified as two of the fastest growing use cases for IoT in Malaysia, which will contribute towards an expected RM9.5 (US$2.23) billion GNI (gross national income) creation by 2020. (See - Securing the Internet of 'Nano-Things,' an exclusive with NanoMalaysia CEO Dr Rezal Khairi Ahmad)

This has prompted Malaysia-based Digi Telecommunications (Digi) to deep dive into the internet of things (IoT) arena with a connected vehicles strategy aimed at the B2B space, which includes a range of solutions for commercial and private vehicles, and insurance providers, said Praveen Rajan, the chief digital officer.

The telecom, which now positions itself as a mobile connectivity and internet solutions provider, announced its determination to ride the Digital Malaysia wave in June 2016. (See - Malaysia's Digi throws down gauntlet, enters digital arena by forming Digi-X)

After setting up initiatives in the startup space, Rajan explained that "for Digi, layering intelligence on its M2M connectivity to provide a new range of robust IoT solutions is a natural progression for the business."

IoT - a clear and natural strategy for disruption

"Digi's focus on the IoT market represents a clear and natural strategy that we are undertaking to diversify revenue streams as we transform from a telecommunications provider into a digital company," he continued.

"By leveraging our solid 4G+ network, this is an opportunity for us to better monetise data and draw a broader audience to our new digital offerings that package connectivity with intelligent solutions," he said.

"It is about translating digital into real business value for us with bottom-line impact for our customers," Rajan added. (You can read more about Digital Malaysia in an exlusive two part interview with MDEC CEO Dato' Yasmin Mahmood - Malaysia's battle plan for digital disruption Part 1 and Part 2)

He laid out the company's Connected vehicles venture into the RM9.5 billion IoT space as follows:
● Connected vehicles a potential key business driver for Digi leveraging its solid 4G+ network
● Rolls out B2B fleet tracking solution named iFleet, where big brand names in FMCG, automobile and infrastructure are now piloting the solution
● Ready to activate usage-based insurance (UBI) solution for passenger vehicles and B2C connected vehicle solution in 2H2017

"Malaysia's automotive market landscape indicates that there is an opportunity for Digi to disrupt the status quo, to draw and create much value from the growth within this industry," Rajan said.

What iFleet offers

"The outlook is promising, where commercial vehicles carrying goods are increasingly required to have real-time tracking systems as per [Malaysia's public transport agency] SPAD's ICOP safety guidelines, and the number of registered vehicles total more than 27.6 million in 2016 with growth rates set to maintain at over 60,000 and 500,000 per year respectively for new commercial and private vehicles," he said.

Rajan then went on to talk about the new offerings. "iFleet is a B2B solution targeted at commercial vehicles, the first IoT solution Digi is introducing from its range of Connected Vehicle offerings."

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