What Orange Business Services’ partnership with Siemens means for the AEP market

A partnership this month could indicate that developing all the best-in-class microservices of an IoT Application Enablement Platform (AEP) is not easy, even for a global systems integrator like Orange Business Services.

Orange Business Services made an announcement stating that it will supplement its own in-house-developed AEP with platform services from the industrial equipment giant Siemens. Orange Business Services said it would be using the Siemens MindSphere AEP, combined with its own Datavenue data analytics offering, to deliver IoT solutions in Europe.

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The initial focus will be to develop solutions around asset tracking and monitoring, to optimize and improve supply chain efficiencies, and develop digitally enhanced products to increase customer satisfaction and create new business models, it said.

The French business services leader continues to focus on its ability to bring global cellular connectivity, consulting, system integration, and application development skills to the partnership. And adding Datavenue into the mix will potentially help industrial customers that require added analytics muscle.

The agreement to partner with Siemens likely indicates that Orange Business Services, which has a strong showing in many parts of the IoT value chain, was looking to supplement various microservices of its in-house solution with microservices from MindSphere. The stars of the Orange Business Services IoT portfolio are a device catalog, a network solution and a cloud-based connectivity management platform. Powering all the applications needed to make IoT come alive, though, is a challenging proposition that often requires an ecosystem approach with several partners. Hence Orange Business Services made the decision to use MindSphere which Siemens describes as “a Swiss army knife for all connected machines and devices”.

Commenting on the partnership, Orange Business Services said it will connect systems and objects via MindSphere and customers would have the option of pre-packaged offerings, such as asset tracking, or customized solutions and applications.

The deal strengthens Siemens’ position in the AEP space. And it may serve as a lesson to other IoT service providers that partnerships, rather than in-house development, may be the best way forward to supply all the best-in-class AEP microservices required by enterprises.

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