The emergence of Internet of Things (IoT)-based services is expected to create explosive demand for new devices and applications. Although a large percentage of IoT devices will ride Over The Top (OTT) of existing network subscriptions, many devices must still acquire network access from public (typically paid) Wide Area Networks (WANs)and, traditionally, must have a subscription with the network operator to do this.
This paper explores a variety of subscriptionless device models that benefit both the user and the network operator. For many IoT users, the direct IoT device connectivity subscription cost structure is often higher than the willingness to pay, given the utility of the device in question. Additionally, many end users have a desire to connect to their network of choice for “occasional” data without having to maintain an ongoing subscription. The subscriptionless device model can potentially reduce the cost and complexity for network operators as the network operator may not need to bear the full cost of maintaining “billions” of subscriptions for devices that may attach only occasionally to their network. Rather, operating models are described where the network operator’s primary relationship is with a 3rd party authentication or application service provider instead of the device itself.