M2M Overview

What is M2M?
The term M2M represents a number of different types of communication: machine-to-machine; machine-to-man; man-to-machine; machine-to-mobile and mobile-to-machine

M2M involves the process of giving machines, devices, and appliances the ability to share information with back-office information systems and the people who use them.

button_1It provides means for equipment to build up wireless connection and transmit data in real time between systems, between remote equipments, or with individuals. The M2M technology, which has had data collection, GPS, remote monitoring, telecommunications, and information technologies integrated, is the ecosystems of computing, networking, electronic devices, sensing device, human etc…, can make it possible to realize the automatization of business flows, integrate the real time status of the company’s information technology system and non-IT equipments, and create value-added services. Such a platform can function in settings including security monitoring, automatic meter reading, mechanical services and maintenance business, automatic vending machines, public transportation systems, fleet management, automation of industrial flows, electric machineries, urban informatization and provide extensive applications and solutions.
button_1Future prospects of M2M:Pervasive Computing and interconnection.
Introduction to M2M
M2M as a concept is also a general term referring to all technologies that can reinforce the communicating and networking capacity of machines and equipments. Many of the communications between human beings are also realized by use of machines, for instance, realizing the communications between human beings through the communications between such machines and equipment like cell phones, telephones, computers, and electrographs. Technologies of another category are specially designed for machines to set up their communications. For example, many intelligent apparatuses and instruments are equipped with RS-232 interfaces and GPIB communication interfaces; thus, the capacity to conduct communications between apparatuses and between apparatuses and computers has been strengthened. As technologies develop, more and more equipment have been provided with communicating and networking capacities; thus, to network everything is gradually coming true. Communications between people need interfaces that are more visual and more exquisite and more abundant multimedia contents while what the communications of M2M need more earnestly is a unified and normative communicating interface and standardized transmission contents.

The appearance and development of communicating and networking technologies have brought extreme changes for social life. People can communicate with one another more quickly and more conveniently, and the communications of information become smoother. Nevertheless, for the moment, only computers and other certain information technology equipment are provided with such communicating and networking capacities. Numerous common machines and equipment like household appliances, vehicles, automatic vending machines, and facilities in factories are hardly provided with networking and communicating capacities. The objective of M2M technology is to get all machines and equipment provided with networking and communicating capacities and its core conception is to network everything. The M2M technology, which is of very important significance and has a vast market and extensive applications, is driving a new round of transformation for social production and living style.

Classification of business application and application systems
Applications can be classified into two major categories according whether their terminals are mobile or not:
1.Mobile applications:
Applications that are applicable in situations where peripheral equipments are not located in fixed locations, the mobility is strong, and it is necessary to have real time communications with the central node, like handset systems or on-board systems for vehicles and ships for people engaged in such sectors as the transport industry, public security, customs, taxation, medical treatment and logistics.
2.Fixed applications:
Applications that are applicable in situations where peripheral equipments are located in fixed locations but geographically extensive, where cable access is difficult or expensive, and where it is possible to realize unattended by making use of M2M, such as information collection or trading systems in such sectors as electricity power, water conservancy, oil extraction, mining, environmental protection, meteorology, tobacco, and finance.
The application systems of M2M technology mainly consist of three parts:
1.Enterprise management software platform
2.Wireless communication solution
3.Equipments used to conduct on-site data collection and monitoring
Product composition
M2M products are mainly made up of the following three parts:
1.Wireless terminals: which are all terminals for special industrial applications instead of common cell phones or laptops.
2.Transmission channels: channels from wireless terminals to the industrial application centers at the user’s end.
3.Industrial application centers: where data uploaded by terminals are gathered together and the monitoring over disperse industrial terminals is conducted. Characteristics of such centers include strong industrial features, management by users themselves, and that they can be at the end of enterprises or under trusteeship.
Technological composition
M2M technology involves five important technological parts: machines, M2M hardware, communication network, middleware, and applications.
1.Intelligent machines
The first step to realize M2M is to obtain data from machines/equipment and then send them out through the network. Machines will be provided with the capacity to “talk”, apperceive information, process information (namely, computing capacity), and realize wireless communications. There are two fundamental methods to get machines provided with the capacity to “talk”: to get a M2M hardware embedded when producing the equipment or have existing machines refitted and get them equipped with the capacity of communicating / networking.
2.M2M hardwareM2M hardware
is the component that makes it possible for machines to get provided with the capacity of remote communicating and networking. is mainly used to extract information, obtain data from various machines/equipment and transmit such data to the communication network. Existing M2M hardware are classified into five categories:
1.Embedded hardware
Hardware that are embedded into machines and make them provided with the networking and communicating capacities. Such products that are commonly seen include wireless embedded data modules in support of GSM/GPRS or CDMA wireless mobile communication networks.
2.Hardware that can be assembled
In the industrial applications of M2M, manufacturers have a large number of equipment and instruments that are not equipped with M2M communicating and networking capacities; thus hardware that can be assembled is just designed to satisfy the networking and communicating capacities of such machines. Products of this category vary in terms of realization forms, such as I/O devices collecting data from sensors; connectivity terminals performing the function of protocol transformation and send data to the communication network; and some kinds of M2M hardware providing the function to conduct reverse control.
3.Modem
When embedded modules referred to above transmit data onto the mobile communication network, they are playing the role of a modem.In case that data to be sent out through the public telephone network or the Ethernet, respective modems will be needed then.
4.Sensors
Sensors can be classified into common sensors and smart sensors. Smart Sensors are mini sensors provided with the capacities to apperceive, compute and communicate. Sensor network made up of smart sensors is an important component of M2M technology. A group of smart sensors provided with the capacity to conduct communications form a wireless network in an ad hoc pattern, coordinating the apperception, collection and processing of information concerning the objects within the geographic region that the network covers, and distributing such information to observers. It is also good for transmitting information to observers. is also okay to transmit information to the IT system over a long distance through the GSM network or the satellite communication network.
5.Location Tags
A location tag is like the “identity card” of respective machines and commodities, making it possible for machines to identify and distinguish one another. Technologies in common use include the bar code technology and the radio-frequency identification (RFID) technology. Tag technologies have been extensively used in commercial repertory and the management of supply chains.
3.Communication network
Communication network transmits information to the destination. Communication networks hold a core status in the overall frame of M2M technology, which include: wide area networks (WAN) (wireless mobile communication network, satellite communication network, Internet, public telephone network), local area networks (LAN) (Ethernet, Wireless Local Area Network, Bluetooth), and personal area networks (ZigBee and sensor network).
4.Middleware
The middleware plays a bridging role between communication networks and the IT system.Middleware includes two parts: M2M gateway and data-collection/integration components. The gateway is the “translator” in the M2M system and it obtains data from the communication network and transmits data to the information processing system. Its main function is to conduct the conversion between various communication protocols.
5.Applications
Data-collection or integration of components means turning data into valuable information. It is to conduct various processing on raw data and present the results to observers and policy-makers who need such information. Such middleware includes: data-analyzing and commercial smart components, abnormality-reporting and work flow components, data warehousing and storage components, and so on.EnterpriseManufacturing, Logistics, RetailsHealth CareKad Pintar 1 MalaysiaTheme ParkAviation and AirlineBankingActivoRFID Anti-counterfeit Ticketing SolutionM2MVolante POSGuard TourE-ClinicSIMCash Mobile PaymentOther Biometric SolutionsSuccessful Deployment