Vodafone launches V by Vodafone in bid for consumer IoT
V by Vodafone in bid for consumer IoT
V-Auto, part of V by Vodafone (Credit: Vodafone)

Vodafone launches V by Vodafone in bid for consumer IoT

Vodafone launches V by Vodafone, to bring all of your consumer connected devices into one place for management. 

Telco Vodafone has decided it wants a piece of the consumer IoT territory, and has staked its claim with the launch of V by Vodafone.

The offer is a mix of a platform brings all your IoT devices together in one place with a suite of compatible devices and a SIM for those devices that people might own and want to make compatible. There are four devices available at launch.

The attraction of V by Vodafone, according to the company, is the opportunity to keep track of all IoT devices through a single app. The service has launched with four devices, which can be brought into the app simply by scanning a QR code.

For other appliances that have a cellular connection and aren’t part of the V by Vodafone suite, users can buy a compatible SIM. Next year, the SIM will be available to third-party retailers, to be bundled with products, and Vodafone will also be expanding its range of V by Vodafone products too.

Read more: Study reveals in-person service essential in creating smart homes

V by Vodafone products

For each of the first four products to be made available with V by Vodafone compatibility – and for the standalone SIM – there’s a one-off charge and then a monthly fee for connected IoT services. All the recurring charges will be combined into a monthly bill. The products include:

  • V-Auto: A plug-and-drive dongle that can be added to most vehicles on European roads manufactured since 2002. This uses the same IoT technologies developed by Vodafone for some of the world’s most advanced connected cars. This costs £80 upfront then £4 month and includes a range of capabilities:
    • Auto SOS: A set of safety services including automated SOS calling to emergency services in case of accidents. It is like the kind of eCall capability that will be a mandatory safety feature fitted in all new cars sold in the European Union from 2018.
    • Find My Car: the answer to that ‘where did I park?’ question.
    • Safety Score: driving performance statistics.
  • V-Camera: A high-definition mobile security camera that provides continuous remote video monitoring of any location where there is 3G or 4G coverage. This is a modified version of the Arlo Go camera, costing £339 upfront, then £4 per month.
  • V-Pet: A location and activity tracker for dogs and cats. This is a modified version of the Kippy Vita pet tracker and costs £50 upfront then £4 per month.
  • V-Bag: A briefcase, handbag and schoolbag tracker that helps reduce the risk of theft or loss though smartphone alerting if a bag leaves a designated area. This is a modified version of the Alcatel Movetrack, costing £59 upfront then £4 per month.

The standalone SIM, meanwhile, will cost £5 upfront, then £3 or £4 per month, depending on the device.

Vodafone has launched V by Vodafone in Germany, Italy, Spain and the UK. Kit can be purchased online. Further countries will follow.

Read more: Survey: UK consumers wary of smart home products