What is DevicePilot?
DevicePilot is a cloud service which helps you manage your connected devices through their entire life-cycle. DevicePilot gives you operational visibility, monitoring and management to ensure you delight your customers as you scale up. DevicePilot frees you up to spend your precious time on what only you can do – building your proposition.
Who needs DevicePilot?
DevicePilot is a tool used by business people in companies that deploy connected devices, across many markets – especially those with operational responsibility for ensuring that the devices are actually working and the customers are happy. For example:
- A dashboard of live metrics to help everyone in the company manage to the same information
- A CFO might want to check her billing records match the number of devices actually deployed
- A CTO might know that there are a few devices with early software out there, which can’t be remote-upgraded. So how many are there, where are they, how painful will the truck-roll be?
- A COO wants a tool to empower their whole team to be vastly more productive, and to deliver a higher-quality customer experience
What’s the problem?
IoT has very different challenges from the kind of deployments we’ve done in the past, such as servers, telco infrastructure or phone apps – which were typically homogenous, well-connected, high-power devices deployed into a controlled environment. In contrast, IoT devices are often diverse, poorly-connected, low-power devices deployed in the real world which is a messy and uncontrolled place. Often they don’t even have a “user” to interact with them to sort out problems. And the number of IoT devices is growing at around 35% per year, which compounds to about 10x per decade, so the sheer numbers become challenging.
All of this makes the task of managing connected devices much harder.
What’s wrong with doing it manually?
Actually, manual is a great way to start. During early trials, when you’ve deployed perhaps tens or hundreds of devices to friendly test customers, providing support to your customers by throwing lots of customer-support people at the problem can be an excellent way to iterate your design to shake out the bugs in your tech and your proposition. After all, the value of those early customers is more about what they teach you, rather than what they’re paying you – trials are about discovering the unexpected and humans are a flexible solution to the variety of unexpected problems you’ll discover at this early trial stage.
But humans don’t scale! Which is to say that even if you could afford the astronomical cost of scaling-up your support and operations teams in direct proportion to your number of devices (which you can’t) the results would still be poor for your customers. When problems happen (and they will) customers want the problem fixed right, now. The only way to do that is to automate as much as possible of your operations, from visibility to management – and that’s what DevicePilot does.
Can’t we just build it ourselves?
Sometimes companies do – and we can provide plenty of testimonials that they usually regret it! It’s not so much that they choose to build an operational management solution, it’s just that they don’t really think about it, so it happens by default. They start off doing everything manually, with for example developers logging-in to devices one-by-one to monitor and upgrade them. When that runs out of steam, the developer will hack together a script to automate some of what they do.
And before they know it, there’s a morass of hacked-together code right at the centre of their operations, getting between them and their customer. Whenever someone wants to know something about the devices, they have to ask the developer to modify their script, then wait a week for it to gather data. That’s no way to do things in a modern company, and it results in a poor customer service, high cost-to-serve, and an inability to scale.
DevicePilot saves you from that situation from day 1. The experience of the DevicePilot team in managing large numbers of devices is encapsulated in the tool, letting anyone in your company ask any operational question and get an immediate answer – no coding required. It’s so simple, robust and good-looking that you can even let your customers use it too if you wish.
How much does it cost?
Help, I can’t figure out how to get started!
No worries, just get in touch.