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In this interview, George Thangadurai, EVP and Head of International Business of Borqs, shares some insights about the organization’s IoT solutions and services, their unique value proposition, and their roadmap for the future.
How has Borqs’ journey been all the way from being a private company to public company?
Since its inception, Borqs has excelled in customizing Android applications for various industry verticals. In our experience in serving the IoT landscape for over a decade, we realized that IoT solutions without personalization or customization cannot meet the unique needs of diverse sectors. One size does not fit all—our forte is customizing IoT-based applications for different sectors that use connected devices to automate their work processes.
We are proud to be one of the few companies to be accredited by Google as its most trusted Android licensee in the world. Borqs was the first company to customize Google’s Android for the Chinese market, ensuring that the software is carrier-ready to be integrated with their services.
We have also partnered with Qualcomm and Intel to provide advanced capabilities in computing and connectivity across devices of varying form factors. Besides developing the first commercial-grade software to support video telephony for Android, Borqs was also selected by Qualcomm in 2016 to partner in the development of the world’s first 4G Android wearable as part of its next-generation Qualcomm® Snapdragon™ Wear platform. This includes smartwatches for children and adults, as well as watches specifically designed for fitness and health tracking.
By utilizing strategic partner relationships with leading chipset vendors to maximize our broad software and intellectual property (IP) portfolio, we have achieved superior leadership and customer recognition across the world. Our aim is to reduce the complexities of IoT adoption for non-traditional applications while enabling innovation at the chipset level to foster vertical-specific connected devices.
What are the technological challenges witnessed by Borqs in the IoT space?
Gone are the days where traditional smartphones and tablets were managed by users or enterprise IT teams. Today, IoT has evolved significantly.
Borqs is in a unique position to help those clients achieve success from devices to the cloud.
What are the unique products and services that you offer to the IoT industry?
Our broad portfolio is comprised of: BORQS Managed Cloud, BORQS in-vehicle infotainment (IVI), BORQS Street and BORQS Home. Through our unified cloud platform, we are able to integrate IoT-enabled devices and deliver highly efficient, tailored services. As a part of smart city solutions, we provide BORQS Smart Street systems that integrate and maintain road traffic sensors for lighting control. This system provides an advertizing and billing platform for third-party suppliers to access digital bill boards on the roads. BORQS IVI, our solution for the automotive segment, provides cloud capabilities for IVI Systems with support for multiple navigation services and helps both drivers and fleet management companies optimize routes.
The Android-based IoT platform we have developed has modular M2M architecture at its core. It not only supports 2G, 3G and 4G connectivity, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, but also helps in building innovative and tailored solutions. With our proven Android module and framework, we provide customized Android solutions for embedded computing and M2M communications.
In the healthcare industry, we have developed IoT applications that allow physicians and healthcare providers to monitor the real-time status of their patients minimizing the risk of infection and improve medical outcomes.
As an IoT solutions provider, we have designed complete exchange-to-exchange cloud solutions to meet the stringent requirements of various vertical segments including marine, oil and gas, remote operations by utility companies, and outdoor expeditions.
Could you please discuss a case scenario where Borqs’ IoT solutions helped a company in addressing their challenges?
We have been working with Sonim Technologies, the largest provider of ruggedized smartphone devices, for over four years. Ruggedized devices are used in very hazardous environments, mostly by public safety officials such as utility workers, fire brigade officials and rescue teams. As these devices need to withstand extreme conditions, they are manufactured to be waterproof and shock-resistant. Most importantly, they need to provide a method of instant communication for the user to have on hand in the case of an emergency. To solve this problem, we implemented a “Push to Talk” feature in these ruggedized devices that works over standard LTE network.
In addition, we are also working with E la Carte, a restaurant solutions provider, where we develop and deploy and Android tablets mounted on the tables that enable customers to browse the menu, order, pay bills and even play games. Unlike other competitors, we have adapted Android applications, including a payment processor that meets strict compliance requirements in all these devices, provides customers with a better experience and accelerates business processes.
Can you share details of the firm’s plans pertaining to new solutions and technologies that could play a role in the company’s offerings in the near future?
With the upsurge in the adoption of connected devices, businesses are compelled to create innovative and tailored devices that are power-efficient, interoperable and highly secure. Typically the chipsets designed by Qualcomm are optimized for IoT devices that require a long battery life. We are developing applications with low-power wireless standards that allow connectivity alongside long battery life for devices that help with controlling, collecting and communicating data autonomously. We are also currently working on developing an advanced tracking system that can monitor assets, pets, kids, elderly and provides notifications regarding status in real time.
For the future, our vision is to become an established leader in the IoT arena by developing innovative IoT applications and deploying millions of connected devices in various form factors across the globe.