ChannelVision Playbook V6

By Gary Kim What we do not have is any shared def- inition of what TaaS entails, much less any common understanding of what specific products will become available and popular. For such reasons, we cannot say with any certainty, yet, what opportuni- ties might develop for channel partners. In principle, TaaS should take its place with other software, infrastructure or platform services sold “as a service” to enterprises. On the other hand, we already have some examples of man- aged services similar in concept to “things as a service” that illustrate how TaaS eventually could develop. Consider the lighting division of elec- tronics company Philips and the energy services company Cofely. Together, those firms now provide lighting as a service to Schiphol, Europe’s fourth- busiest airport. The airport pays only for the light it uses, while Philips remains the owner of all fixtures and installations, taking joint responsibility with Cofely for the perfor- mance of the system and ultimately its reuse and recycling at end of life. If you think about it, that resembles a telecom “managed service,” where the customer pays for usage, and the man- aged service includes use of hardware that is included as part of the service. There also are some similarities to consumer services such as video enter- tainment, where access to content is the main value of the service, but use of the decoders also is bundled (consumers do not “buy and own” set-tops but essen- tially lease them). Those two examples are illustrative. The “things” in both cases are enablers of the service, and it is the “service” which How ‘IoT as a Service’ could develop W ith the Internet of things such a nascent trend, it is difficult to predict which new products might develop that are sold through the communications channel, and in what volumes. We do already have an acronym – Internet of things as a service (TaaS) – to describe platforms or perhaps other services sold “as a service” to business buyers. Things to Consider 12 THE CHANNEL MANAGER’S PLAYBOOK