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Plume CTO on why Amazon has the inside track on IoT brand loyalty

Season 2

With the pace of broadband subscriber growth showing signs of slowing after big surges during the early days of the pandemic, some service providers are expanding their influence into the management and security of IoT devices that are proliferating on the home network. While not all of those strategies have aligned perfectly among ISPs, an analysis of the data on the home Wi-Fi network can provide lots of insight about which brands and device types consumers are gravitating to. 

Plume, a data and cloud services specialist that manages Wi-Fi in more than 40 million homes worldwide, recently issued its latest Plume IQ report, with this one focused on the IoT brands driving the most consumer loyalty. The report found that Amazon is seemingly in the cat bird's seat, atop of Apple and Google. Notably, Amazon's position in the IoT market runs relatively independent of the smart phone being used while Apple's position is largely determined by whether the consumer is an iPhone user. 

Bill McFarland, Plume's chief technology officer, recently joined the Light Reading podcast with Editor-in-Chief Phil Harvey and Senior Editor Jeff Baumgartner to dig into the data and the numbers, extrapolate some broad IoT trends and explain how this kind of data can benefit the strategies of broadband operators. 

To pinpoint some of that activity and gather trends and insights, Plume uses AI and machine language techniques to enable "device typing" to determine what kind of device is connecting to the network. 

"It's not as easy as it might sound because there isn't a protocol or a standard message they send about what kind of device they are," McFarland said. "You have to kind of look at the way they're behaving, the protocols they are using and so forth, and then compare that with other devices you've seen of that type and you do a matching." 

Here's an outline of topics covered in this podcast:

  • The technical basis of the Plume IQ report, and how it relies on data to uncover and identify industry trends and indicators. (1:40)
  • Thoughts on why Amazon was high on the IoT brand loyalty list and why it seems to broadly attract consumers independent of the rest of their device ecosystem, including smartphones. (5:30) 
  • What other kind of data can be collected to help broadband service providers manage the home network and make better decisions that can cut down on the cost of their broadband delivery. (14:30)
  • How the role of the service provider in IoT and IoT security is evolving as consumers continue to adopt more connected devices that hook into the home network. (17:00)
  • Beyond the likes of Amazon, Apple and Google, what other products, brands and device types are making a mark in IoT? Where does Sonus and even connected cars, for example, fall in the pecking order? (26:30)

— Jeff Baumgartner, Senior Editor, Light Reading

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