Always agile: ExecMobile’s decade of mobile innovation - TechCentral

Always agile: ExecMobile’s decade of mobile innovation

ExecMobile was founded a decade ago to keep executives mobile. The company has come a long way since then. Here’s a look back at its history, and a peek into its future plans.

2010: ExecMobile founded
The company was founded in 2010 to keep executives mobile. Back then, it meant ensuring travellers could remain connected out of their hotel Wi-Fi zones, while addressing security and high data roaming costs. Oddly, recent events mean mobility now requires employees to remain connected out of the office, while addressing security and high mobile costs. Very similar — just local, not global.

Our eSim profile allowed us to instantly offer executives dual network coverage on South Africa’s two largest networks, while also offering application profiling and website blacklists to limit costs, via our Web-based Sim management platform.

Now, we are disrupting the local APN status quo to ensure employees can connect directly to the cloud, at a lower cost, using Web-based perimeter security to replace aged firewalls and corporate data centres.
Here is a look at our history — our disruptive solutions indicate what we have achieved to date, and what will be next in our eSim evolution.

2011: First MVNE API integration
ExecMobile’s first API integration into a mobile virtual network enabler (MVNE), Cubic Telecom, allowed us to offer Sims and our first mobile Wi-Fi unit — our first 3G PocketWifi.

The service was, however, only available in 36 European countries and limited to one network per country.

2012: Better roaming agreements
ExecMobile partnered with Telroaming as its technology partner to provide a better, more advanced PocketWifi service to travellers, via better roaming agreements from another MVNE.

Single Sim roaming agreements allowed coverage in 110 countries, expanding to around 128 within a year. Disruptive technology, however, was soon to offer even better rates and coverage.

2014: 3G multi-Sim PocketWifi
We launched our first multi-Sim PocketWifi. This 3G unit’s firmware and hardware was modified to accommodate multiple operators’ Sims.

This innovation allowed us to use the best Sim (roaming agreement) per country, and provided excellent rates in 149 countries. Importantly, our Sim management platform capabilities were dramatically improved, offering application analysis and advanced reporting.

2016: LTE multi-Sim PocketWifi
Coverage was extended to 158 countries with the launch of the 4G PocketWifi. Further firmware modifications allowed customers to roam across various networks in a country, greatly improving coverage.

2018: First multi-IMSI Sim
Our 4G PocketWifi insides again got a technology upgrade to utilise multi-IMSI technology — 400+ partner networks on one Sim card.

Coverage expanded to 191 countries, including 43 in Africa. Over-the-air provisioning and steering were added to ensure the unit connected to the best available network, paving the way for eSim profile management.

2019: eSim launched
ExecMobile launches eSim profiles for consumer devices (phones, tablets, etc) and Internet of things and machine-to-machine devices. It largely replaced our PocketWifi devices as the Sim offers tethering, and hence additional convenience.

Our eSim adoption for companies has been dramatic, notably recently with the launch of a Discovery server, which allows mass eSim deployments without cumbersome QR code e-mails. Currently, we support:

  • iOS iPhone 11, 11 Pro, 11 Pro Max, XS, XS Max, XR, SE (2020)
  • iPad: 11-inch iPad Pro, 12.9-inch iPad Pro (3rd generation), iPad Air (3rd generation), iPad (7th generation), iPad Mini (5th generation)
  • Android Samsung: Galaxy Fold; Google Pixel: 4 XL, 4, 3, 3XL, 3A, 3A XL; Nuu Mobile: X5
  • Microsoft Surface Tablet Pro (5th generation)

2020: SIMplify management platform
ExecMobile now offers global, newAPN and prepaid Sim management, all on a highly customised platform:

  • White-label options available;
  • Unlimited accounts, groups and sub-group iterations; and
  • Reporting is possible at every account, group and sub-group level, and is perfect to offer customers control and visibility of all Sims.

Looking ahead to 2021

In the last 10 years, execMobile has received various accolades and commendations from analysts and customers. Its products have also won various awards, including being named in the “Top 20 African Innovation” list.

Our next chapter involves mass eSim profile distribution, IoT connectivity and addressing outdated corporate APNs – we hope to provide all our customers’ global and local mobile data needs with more innovative solutions.

We can already ship eSim chips with active profiles and mass deploy eSim profiles via our Discovery server to GSM-compatible IoT devices. Soon we will be able to switch profiles on existing eSim IoT devices via patented technology, and hope to gain customers’ trust that there is a better way to connect corporate users.

Here’s to the next 10 years!

About execMobile
ExecMobile, South Africa’s leading alternative mobile data provider, was founded in 2010 to disrupt the mobile data roaming market. Now our aim is to offer better, secure local mobile data to remote workers and offer IoT and Sim management for enterprises and “things”. To learn more of execMobile’s solutions, visit our website, contact us via e-mail or call 011 575 4137.

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