We’ve covered Machine-to-Machine and remote monitoring technologies and how they’re reshaping the way manufacturers and service organizations deliver maintenance. But M2M tech can get complex pretty quickly. Mobile Enterprise published a white paper this week breaking down M2M. Here are three takeaways:

1. M2M is Here, and It’s Growing

Just under 30 percent of original equipment manufacturers’ “serviceable” assets are already being monitored remotely, according to research from the Aberdeen Group. And that number is only going to grow. In fact, over 60 percent of OEM assets could benefit from remote service capabilities, the paper says.

2. Two-Way M2M Can Reduce Costs and Boost Revenue

The real potential for M2M isn’t just in reducing paperwork and accelerating operational processes — it can transform the way business run. Two-way M2M allows a centralized monitor to not only collect and analyze information, but to also send commands wirelessly back to connected products in the field. This technology can reduce expensive truck rolls, re-invent preventative maintenance scheduling, and significantly cut into equipment downtime.

A second element of M2M is the ability to actually use the newfound data that OEMs are able to collect, and turn around and sell it as a separate product. Thirty percent of leading firms, according the study, say they already generate revenue from the provision of asset usage and performance reports to their customers.

3. M2M Technology Has Different Capabilities

Not all M2M tech is made equal. Depending on the type of information companies intend to collect, the physical location of the equipment they monitor, and the volume of data coming in, different technologies may ultimately lend themselves to your particular needs.

Radio frequency ID (RFID) tags are inexpensive and can be literally printed and stamped onto products (including food and animals) — however the products need to be in close proximity to a reader to be counted. General packet radio service (GPRS) uses 2G and 3G cellular networks to send data, which is efficient but potentially expensive, especially if your equipment is out of cellular coverage. Finally, Broadband Global Area Network terminals send information over a satellite connection, which offers global coverage, but at a greater cost.

Download the white paper (free with registration) at Mobile Enterprises.

: How Coke and GE Let Their Machines Do the Talking.

Click here to download a free whitepaper, “Five Steps to Make Field Service Profitable.”

ABOUT Ian Stewart

Avatar photoIan is a veteran journalist who has covered sports for various news outlets. Previously, he was managing editor for an electronic-book publishing company and a public relations writer.