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What's new in December 2016

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Dashboarding evolutions

Connecting machines to the IoT involves several core processes:

  • a backend to store data in a structured way,
  • visualizing this data,
  • real time logic to interpret data and react,
  • integration with a data lake or other applications in the enterprise.

If you use several tools to build your IoT solution, you require:

  • investment, technical skills to map the tools to the data, and adequate processing power to gather the information,
  • the ability to flexibly invoke a redesign cycle as your needs evolve.

By supplying a single platform to help to build an end-to-end IoT solution, including dashboard features, AirVantage helps you to quickly build your solution. Because it is:

  • Pre integrated: no integration needed with another tool
  • No extra cost: it is already included in AirVantage
  • Fast: you can configure your widgets instead of developing a server application
  • Flexible: any data sent to AirVantage can be visualized

It is not a white labeled dashboard tool which allows you to build an end user dashboard.

What are the new functionnalities?

New widgets

Single Value Chart

A Single Value Chart displays a single data value.

Combo Chart

A Combo Chart displays data in a graph: bar (stacked or not), line or with both.

Table Chart

A Table Chart displays up to 4 data values.

Data History Table

A Data History Table displays the history of data in a table for a specific period, one row per data history.

Angular Gauge

An Angular Gauge highlights a range of values between the lower limit and current limit with a gradient color.

Solid Gauge

A Solid Gauge displays a gauge where each area is always displayed in order to distinguish data sections. You can configure the number of sections and the associated labels.

VU Meter

A VU Meter is an analogic-like meter. The 3 areas are always displayed.

What functionalities does it add?

The new widgets come with new capabilities as described below. More new features will be delivered in subsequent releases.

  • Time navigation: a drop down list lets you select the period
  • Aggregated data and raw data: you can use a computed value for a given period (hour, day, month) to be displayed in the widget, or the raw data value sent by the device
  • Fleet or single system widgets

You can find more details on the dashboard page.

Self service connectivity management

With the aim of improving your connectivity management experience, we are adding customer self care functionality.

View and change provisioning options

When a SIM is activated, it is provisioned with a default set of teleservices and roaming options. You now have the capability to view and adjust those options anytime by adding new ones or removing some. This can be done for one SIM or a set of SIMs.

To identify systems on which to apply the operation, you can use the filters ‘provisioning is’ or ‘provisioning not’ to list all systems with or without a specific option. Then use the change provisioning action and add any option that is compatible with your offer.

More details available in How-To change provisioning options.

Swap SIM

When a SIM card of your fleet is stolen or damaged, you may need to replace it with a new SIM from your stock. With the Swap SIM functionality, you will select the target SIM within your inventory and trigger a swap. The subscription linked to the system remains unchanged: only the ICCID will be altered while keeping the configuration related to the subscription (MSISDN, Static IP, offer, provisionning options, etc.).

The stolen or damaged ICCID will be terminated as a consequence of the Swap.

Swapping a SIM doesn’t have any impact on your invoice.


Alerting on any usage type consumption

The AirVantage alerting engine has been enriched. You can now create alert rules if the consumption of any type of usage reaches the specified daily or monthly threshold. The flexible ruleset for consumption alerting lets you efficiently avoid billshock.

A few examples of alert rules that you can create:

  • a maximum monthly voice call duration
  • a daily limit to the number of SMS sent
  • a daily limit for monthly USSD MSU exchanged
  • or even a maximum number of data sessions for a day

An alert rule can apply to one system only, to a subset of systems identified by a label, or to the whole fleet. The alert will be raised if ANY system covered by the selection reaches the chosen criteria.


Timeline view

A timeline view has been added to the system details. This time centric view is very helpful for troubleshooting as it presents in the same view all the events that can occur on your system as:

  • usage records
  • operations start and end dates
  • alerts that are raised
  • device and application data being received from the device

You can filter the timeline for a specific day by using the time selector on the top, and for a specific type of event.

Having every event gathered in a time centric view lets you easily analyze the consequences of an operation on usage, or view the recent usages that have triggered an alert.

Detach in Diagnosis

The Detach function can be used if you suspect an issue with the wireless service: for instance, the diagnostic shows that a session is on-going, but you are not able to effectively transmit data; or the diagnostic shows that your device is reachable but you are not able to send it an SMS.

Clicking on ‘Detach’ in the Voice Status pane triggers a detach procedure from the network side. The device then restarts an attach procedure and also a data session is re-established from the beginning. Note that in most cases the device will register to the same network if this network is available.

If you use an ADVANCED SIM you can also use the ‘Detach Data only’ functionality in the Data Status pane. In this case, the SIM will automatically detect the loss of data service and the device will register to another network.

Other improvements

Microsoft Azure EventHub Connector

The Microsoft Azure EventHub stream is a producer-consumer connector for applications hosted on the Microsoft Azure Services Cloud.

AirVantage publishes the new operations status, the alerts and the new raw data in your stream using the fully-documented JSON format . No password is stored on Sierra Wireless’ side: AirVantage uses a connection string you have to generate in the Microsoft Azure Console in order to give access to AirVantage.

Messages are sent using https. Optimized to handle a high volume of messages (retry mechanism, bulk send), you can easily operate and scale your application. You maintain control over your stream: you can stop or unauthorize Sierra Wireless’s access to your topic at any time using the Microsoft Azure Administration console.

Take a look at the tutorial for more information about how to enable it in your account.

In late December, we released ALEOS 4.7.0 for the RV50, GX450 and ES450. This release introduces a new device management protocol, LWM2M, which manages the communication between ALMS and the devices.

This same update also provides support for the newly released RV50X.

Life cycle dates

Main life cycle dates of your SIM/System are now displayed in the detailed view, in a specific widget:

  • Creation date: date at which the SIM/System was added to your account as a result of your order.
  • Activation date: date at which the SIM/System was activated. This date is also the one that is relevant for the engagement period.
  • Last change change date: date of the last change of life cycle state. For instance if you suspend your subscription, the last change date will be the date of suspension.

These main life cycle dates are also available in the grid. To display them, click on the grid configuration, select the check boxes for the dates to be displayed and validate your choice.

You can also use the grid filters to identify the SIMs that have been activated prior to a date of choice, or that have a last state change date that falls within a specific timeframe.

USSD Gateway API

USSD stands for Unstructured Supplementary Service Data. It is a connection-oriented service to send messages to cellular devices. As a connection-oriented service, the device must be online for the message to reach it. Using USSD, you can establish real-time interactions between your application and the device by implementing a request/response exchange.

To send/receive USSD messages to/from a device, your IoT application will need to interface with our USSD Gateway. So that you can use this USSD service, and integrate it with your IoT application, we are providing a SOAP API. For more information about this API and also on how to enable this service, please refer to USSD Gateway documentation.

Subaccounts option

Subaccount management is an optional feature. It is typically a useful way to restrict user access to just part of the global fleet. Usually subaccounts are used to split SIMs and resources between your own customers, or to manage different business units. In that case those identified users will be created at the subaccount level and will only be able to view and manage the SIMs within the subaccount.

This option includes the capability to:

  • create new subaccounts,
  • share one or more offer with them,
  • transfer SIMs to a subaccount,
  • search for SIMs across the whole fleet.

If you think this feature could be valuable for you, you can find more details in Subaccounts Documentation and then discuss the option with your usual sales contact.