Kyrgyzstan operator Megacom has launched an IoT tariff called “Smart Devices.” Aimed at both consumers and small businesses, the plan provides connectivity for various sensors, power meters, navigators, GPS modules and other smart devices. Data packages for 30, 90 or 360 days are available, all of which include 10 minutes of on-net calls and 100 on-net SMS monthly. Each plan comes with 220 MB at unlimited speed, after which the speed drops to 128 Kbps.
The 30-day package costs KGS 50.00 (US $0.59), the 90-day package is KGS 140.00 (US $1.65), and the price of the 360-day bundle is KGS 490.00 (US $5.78). Customers are also offered a thermo-resistant SIM for KGS 100.00 (US $1.18).
This plan is interesting for bridging the gap between consumer and small-business use. Megacom’s logic is undoubtedly that IoT is growing in popularity and usefulness in both sectors, and that the demands on IoT of small businesses are not fundamentally different from those of consumers—unlike those of larger enterprises, which are in the realm of heavy industry.
If the use of IoT devices reaches a certain point, a dedicated plan makes sense, and this is what Megacom is offering. The prices are very low, which is appropriate for the small amount of bandwidth that the connectivity of simple sensors and GPS devices requires. We are not dealing with automation and control of large-scale, high-powered and highly complex systems here.
One does not know exactly what “unlimited speed” means in this case, although presumably these relatively simply IoT applications and devices hardly need the advantages that 5G is bringing to the world of 5G. On the other hand, 128 Kbps seems too slow to be of much use, so users will have to be careful that the data demands of their devices are below 220 MB per month. The tiny amount of voice minutes and the fact that they are on-net only indicate that the Smart Devices plan is really tightly focused on IoT and the voice and SMS are there almost as a courtesy or in a nominal sense rather than as integral aspects of the daily use of the service.