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M2M as best described in Wikipedia stands for Machine to Machine 

“M2M can include the case of industrial instrumentation - comprising a device (such as a sensor or meter) to capture an event (such as temperature, inventory level, etc.) that is relayed through a network (wireless, wired or hybrid) to an application (software program) that translates the captured event into meaningful information (for example, items need to be restocked). Such communication was originally accomplished by having a remote network of machines relay information back to a central hub for analysis, which would then be rerouted into a system like a personal computer”. (full Wikipedia page http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Machine_to_machine )

M2M is a growing aspect of technology, devices communicating with devices.  The DATASHED gateway is being used as a confidential conduit for SMS communications between devices in the field and computer based management applications.

For example:  A District Council has a sensor monitoring water levels at a reservoir, if it falls below a certain level that data is sent via the network to a PC at the Council, it is transmitted as a value which is then converted to a measurable number and often integrated with a system like QTech’s DATRANvue to be viewed on screen in a meaningful and live format.  A low level alarm can also be sent via text message to the required staff informing them so they can carry out the required action.

Some of our current application domains include:
  • Fuel Industry – Tank monitoring
  • Utilities Sector – Reservoir / Pump Station Monitoring
Examples of messages that can be sent:
  • The message must not exceed 172 characters in length.  If you are putting a link to your website you must state that they will be subject to data charges.

When sending marketing or sales based SMS you must have an agreement from the recipient that they agree to receive such an SMS. They must be deemed to have Opted-In, it is recommended that this is done as a part of a written application process (Trade Application, Customer Loyalty Program application etc.). It may be achieved via a website or email based process if desired. GroupSend operates on the basis that you enter or import the database of recipients for your messages. Hence you are in control and responsible for this list or database.

At any point the recipient must have the ability to be taken off the list and stop receiving the SMS messages. This is called Opting-Out.
The recipient should also be aware who they are receiving  SMS’s from and what they are paying for the service or information that is provided.  If they are to be charged (MT) for the SMS to be sent this must be clearly stated. If they are not paying for the SMS then they should be made aware that the SMS they are receiving is ‘Free’.

GroupSend has these features built into simplify the process for you, they are visible from the SMS send form and by default they are enabled for use. GroupSend solutions can be set up for a minimal fee plus an on-going monthly fee for a minimum 6 month term.  Please note that with applications using MO & MT $0.00 rated connections there will be monthly invoice with a per SMS charge which varies depending on the provider.

The term MO & MT $0.00 rated is used when there is no charge to the person receiving the txt or sending a txt to a short code from their mobile.  These are charged directly by DATASHED to our client via monthly billing.   Each telco has their own charging structure which is explained in full once it has been ascertained which type of service DATASHED will provide.  Spark and 2Degrees  charge the one fee per message sent and/or replied to.  Vodafone however charge per message received and message replied although the fee is lower and once dual traffic is charged it is on par with the fees charged by the other telcos.

Points to consider when using SMS

Like email, SMS is the type of communications that is prone to SPAM. Legislation is place to protect consumers and there is potential for unscrupulous  spammers s to be prosecuted if caught sending SMS’s that are deemed to be SPAM. The Telecommunications Carriers Forum was formed as body to provide some self-regulatory regimes for Premium Messaging Services.  All of the Telco’s have taken an involvement along with industry to achieve a common code of practice in the use of SMS.
The short codes in use by GroupSend have been taken into service with each of the Telco’s and measures are in place to prevent miss-use of the SMS service being provided.  Note miss-use or notification of complaints from the Telco’s will result in the service being disconnected.

Device Monitoring

Many clients are using the DATASHED Gateway with an Integrated Solution to remotely monitor and interact with SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) systems and devices.  These systems are sending out messages to staff or contractors who need to receive reporting information in order to ensure a system is running correctly or to be notified of an event that has occurred.  By using ‘push’ services, events, alarms and information about a process are sent to the SMS Gateway by the monitoring application and then sending a pre-set text onto nominated mobile numbers. 

Example: A Council might receive information that levels have dropped to below an acceptable level in a town water reservoir and that action needs to be taken.  The system will receive a signal from the device at the reservoir which will trigger an automated SMS to be sent via the Gateway to a pre-determined contact list in the system.  This could simply be a notification of the level or it could give the option to turn on a pump or activate a remote device to do a specific task.
‘Pull’ services now provide real power to the engineer or operator in the field.  From their handset, they can use the Gateway to query information or adjust/control set up points or values in an application or device.  This provides greater systems support and functionality from anywhere with cell phone coverage. 

Example: There could be a deluge of water in a particular area and the water engineer wants to monitor the water levels in the reservoir over the next few hours.  By sending a text via the SMS Gateway he can request the information from the remote device.  Once received he can use that information to accurately determine what action is required.   The system is designed to promote efficiency and should there be the need for him to turn on a pump to redirect the water flow for a set time, he can conveniently activate the pump switch from his mobile.

Integrated Solutions for Alarm Monitoring, remote monitoring and control activation 

DATASHED Technologies is a Christchurch based company delivering an SMS Gateway that enables you to stay in contact with customers or staff and even monitor electronic devices via the cellular network.
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03 366 3713