Neo service overview

What exactly is Neo?

Neo provides cellular connectivity for IoT devices. It is designed with simplicity in mind, providing you with all the tools you need to deploy IoT solutions more quickly and effectively than ever before.

Whether this is your first connected solution, or you are already well-versed in deploying cellular connectivity, our process enables you to access Neo connectivity in about 10 minutes.

Does Aeris operate its own network?

We own and operate our own Core Network, which serves as the foundation of the Neo connectivity service and allows us to provide near real-time transactional information for all connected devices.

Why does Aeris own and operate a Core Network, and what benefits does this provide?

Core Network ownership allows the Neo connectivity service to provide near real-time transactional information for all connected devices. We are also able to react quickly to any Core Network outages, thus providing greater levels of customer service.

Does Neo support consumer handset traffic?

No. The Neo connectivity service is designed and optimized for IoT traffic.

What is AerPort?

AerPort is the connectivity management platform for provisioning and managing devices connected to Neo. It is also sometimes referred to as the Neo portal.

Which cellular services does Neo support?

Neo supports Data and SMS. Neo does not support voice.

Which cellular technologies does Neo support?

Neo supports 2G / 3G GSM and LTE with 3G fallback.

Billing

What is MRC?

Monthly Recurring Charge. This is the monthly fee incurred by each device on the network in the Bill state (typically $1).

Can I automatically stop a SIM from incurring overages? How about other types of alerts?

Yes, you can easily customize alerts/actions to meet your business requirements. Learn more >

How do I get a refund?

Simply submit a request to our finance team:

Quicklinks order problem link

What if I don't need all my SIMs immediately but will use them in the future?

Neo SIMs remain in your “inventory” indefinitely and can be provisioned as needed. To provision a SIM in inventory simply check the box next to its ICCID and click Provision.

SIM inventory

How do I change my credit card or other billing information?

You can easily change your billing information via your account settings.

Select account settings Edit credit card information

Is data billed differently than SMS?

Please refer to our pricing page.

Is there a cost for SMS? What about SMS-MT cost through an API?

Please refer to our pricing page

One of the security features our connectivity service provides is blocking access to a device on the network directly from another device (e.g. voice or SMS from a handset to a Neo SIM). This prohibits potentially abusive network activity from impacting your IoT devices.

The only way to transmit SMS-MO or -MT with a Neo SIM is through the AerFrame API. The Neo connectivity management portal has a “Send SMS” feature, which invokes AerFrame, so whether you use the portal or access AerFrame directly with your application the API is used to transmit SMS.

Can I get my monthly invoice in PDF format?

When you download your monthly invoice it will be in PDF format.

I see "Input Bytes" and "Output Bytes" on my invoice. What are those?

"Input Bytes" and "Output Bytes" reflect data transferred to (input) and from (output) devices during packet data sessions. Session timeout usually occurs due to connection inactivity/idle time or the lack of a response from the server for the request sent.

Can I pay with a credit card from outside the United States?

Unfortunately, we only accept credit cards with a U.S. billing address.

Can I set my own rates for my customers?

Yes, you are free to charge different rates than those of Aeris.

SIMs

Which SIM form factors are available for Neo?

We offer Standard grade mini-SIMs and Industrial grade mini-SIMs, both with a 2FF form factor. Learn more

Looking for micro-SIMs? Visit our partner Digi-Key


APIs

What APIs does Aeris provide? Is there an overview of capabilities?

We offer three sets of APIs:

  • AerAdmin – Enables access to device management features in the Aeris network
  • AerFrame – Enables SMS communication with devices in the Aeris network
  • AerTraffic – Enables access to Aeris's report generation features

Access to these features is also available through AerPort, our cloud-based Connectivity Management Portal. You can find an API overview here.

What is required to create an Inbound (MO) SMS Subscription?

Please reference details in our AerFrame tutorial. You can also check our AerFrame code samples for reference.

One of the security features our connectivity service provides is the inability to reach a device on the network directly from another device (e.g. voice or SMS from a handset to a Neo SIM). This prohibits potentially abusive network activity from impacting your IoT devices.

The only way to transmit SMS-MO or -MT with a Neo SIM is through the AerFrame API. The Neo connectivity management portal has a “Send SMS” feature, which invokes AerFrame, so whether you use the portal or access AerFrame directly with your application the API is used to transmit SMS.

SMS

How do I block SMS if I don't want it?

You can easily disable SMS via the Devices tab in the portal.

Block SMS 1 Block SMS 2 Block SMS 3

OR:

Block SMS Block SMS

What is required to create an Inbound (MO) SMS Subscription?

Please reference details in our AerFrame tutorial. You can also check our AerFrame code samples for reference.

One of the security features our connectivity service provides is the inability to reach a device on the network directly from another device (e.g. voice or SMS from a handset to a Neo SIM). This prohibits potentially abusive network activity from impacting your IoT devices.

The only way to transmit SMS-MO or -MT with a Neo SIM is through the AerFrame API. The Neo connectivity management portal has a “Send SMS” feature, which invokes AerFrame, so whether you use the portal or access AerFrame directly with your application the API is used to transmit SMS.


APN

What is an Access Point Name (APN)?

The APN is the point of entry to the Internet for your IoT device.

What is a public APN?

Every network provider has an APN, which is publicly accessible. Public APN is the default for your IoT device.

What is a private APN?

A private APN is a point of entry available to your devices only.

What is the advantage of a private APN?

Traffic using a private APN is secure and never goes to a public network. This lessens complexity in the communications path and is one less point of failure in the system.

Do I need a VPN to access the Neo APN?

The Neo APN is publically accessible, meaning a VPN is not required.

Where is the APN programmed?

The APN is programmed on the IoT device, not on the SIM.

How is the Neo APN programmed?

The Neo APN is programmed using one of the following methods:

  1. Manually using an AT command. Requires access to an AT console.
  2. Using a web GUI, if supported by the device.
  3. Using MT-SMS, if supported by the device.

Does an APN require a username and password?

No.

IP addresses

What is an Internet Protocol (IP) address?

All devices connected to the Internet are identified by an IP address. This address enables delivery of data traffic to the proper device.

What is a Static, or Fixed, IP?

Devices configured for static or fixed IP addresses are allocated the same IP address each time they connect to the Internet.

What is a Dynamic IP?

Devices configured for dynamic IP addresses are allocated an IP address which is derived from a pool of addresses each time they connect to the Internet.

What is a Private IP address?

An address that is not accessible via the public Internet.

What is a Public IP address?

An address that can be accessed via the Internet.

What is the advantage of a Private IP address?

A device with a private IP address is 'hidden' from normal network traffic and can only be accessed via a secure VPN connection.

Does Aeris support IPV6?

Aeris currently supports IPV4 only.

Can I get a contiguous block of IPs for my devices?

The Neo service does not currently support contiguous IP blocks.

VPN

What do Virtual Private Network (VPN) and VPN tunnel mean?

VPN is a technology that enables a secure connection to an endpoint by creating a virtual, secure pathway through a public network (typically the Internet). That pathway is referred to as a VPN tunnel.

What is a site-to-site VPN?

A site-to-site VPN consists of dedicated hardware in a data center that supports VPN functions. (Also referred to as "hardware VPN".)

What is a Software VPN?

A software VPN consists of a client-side application that supports VPN functions. (Also referred to as "software VPN".)

When do I need a VPN?

  • If the IoT device is uploading data to a private application server.
  • If the application server initiates communication with the device. In most cases, IoT devices initiate the communication.
  • If you plan to use SMPP for SMS.

Cellular technology

What is GPRS?

GPRS stands for General Packet Radio Service. It is a wireless technology used by GSM (Global System for Mobile) networks to enable Internet and other data communication.

What is 3G?

3G stands for third generation, a generic wireless industry term for high-speed mobile data delivery over mobile networks. 3G networks allow users to send and receive bandwidth-intensive information such as video, video conferencing, high quality audio and web data on-demand, virtually anytime and anywhere.

What is GSM?

GSM stands for Global System for Mobile communications. It is the second-generation digital technology originally developed for Europe but which now has in excess of 70% of the world market.

Which cellular technologies does Neo support?

Neo supports 2G / 3G GSM and LTE with 3G fallback.

Coverage

What coverage does the Neo connectivity service provide?

Aeris is the number one wireless communications service provider dedicated to machine-to-machine and IoT in the United States.

Our network offers a combination of GPRS, Edge, and UMTS services to provide extensive GSM and LTE coverage that reaches over 200 million people and many more machines. The high reliability of our network has made Aeris the service provider of choice for the most demanding providers of IoT and M2M solutions. Consult Neo's GSM and LTE coverage maps (coverage available in the United States only).

Does the Neo connectivity service provide coverage outside of the U.S.?

Neo provides coverage in the U.S. only. If your solution requires coverage outside of the United States, contact us to learn about our international billing plans.

How can I ensure optimal coverage in a rural area?

If your solution is primarily designed to work in rural areas, contact us to learn about our CDMA connectivity service. It provides the best coverage of all cellular technologies in the U.S.

Diagnostics

Why won't my device establish a data session when I power it on?

A device doesn't establish a data session when it powers up. For more information see our Transmit Packet Data tutorial.

What circumstances cause my connected device to become idle or disconnect from the network?

A network might close a device's Packet Data Protocol (PDP) context for many reasons. Three examples are:

  1. Lack of radio access
  2. Close initiated by the roaming network
  3. Access closed by the application

My device only accepts SMS from a phone number that it recognizes. Is there a NEO solution?

The only way to send SMS-MT to a device containing a Neo SIM is via our AerFrame API. (SMS-MT can also be sent from the portal, which actually calls the API to carry out the operation.) The content of the SMS from AerFrame contains a 10-digit phone number, which is the same for every transmission.

How do I edit one of my devices?

On the Devices tab you'll see all the devices you have in the “Bill” state. Click anywhere on a row and you'll navigate to the page showing that device's details. On that page you'll see a green “Edit device” button. You can also edit a device directly from the initial Devices page by clicking the green pencil icon on any row.

Can I retrieve photos from my mobile phone using a Neo SIM?

Neo SIM cards are not designed for use in consumer phones. They are designed to provide cellular connectivity for machine devices (GPS location-based tracking, remote meter monitoring, health care device monitoring, etc.).

Also, consumer phones are equipped with storage devices unrelated to the SIM card. If you're looking for a way to transfer stored files from a phone to another device, that process won't involve the SIM card.

Is it possible to find the IMEI number of a provisioned device via the Neo portal?

Because the IMEI is specific to the device, not the SIM card, the Neo portal doesn't have access to that value. If you have remote access to the device you can use an AT command to get the IMEI (‘AT+CGSN?’).

Do I need to configure the SMS Gateway in order to send/receive SMS?

The SMS gateway number is defined in Neo SIMs so there is no need to configure it. There are two ways to transmit SMS:

  1. Via the AerFrame API
  2. Via the green Send SMS button on the device diagnostics page for your device

When the AerFrame API reports that an MT-SMS was successfully sent to a device it's doing so based on an acknowledgement from the device. Device replies or MO-SMS from a connected device can only be seen using the AerFrame API call from your application — they aren't available on the portal.

Can Neo SIMs receive SMS from mobile phones?

As an IoT security feature, the Neo connectivity service doesn’t support MT SMS from a mobile phone. This protects connected devices from potentially abusive network activity from external handsets. You can, however, send SMS to your device two ways:

  1. Via the AerFrame API
  2. Via the green Send SMS button on the device diagnostics page for your device

Device Diagnostics says “Device never registered”. What does that mean?

When you see “Device never registered” under Diagnostics on the Devices tab for a given device it usually means the device has never been powered on with the Neo SIM inserted.

Can Neo SIMs work with a public IP address?

One of the core tenets of our network, which is purpose built from the ground up for M2M / IoT connectivity, is offering a secure environment for our customers' devices. Our connectivity service is designed to prohibit communication from public devices, such as smart phones or other handsets. For this reason we don't offer public IP addresses.

Why have all my devices suddenly became unregistered?

Network deregistration is typically initiated by an IoT device, not the network. Usually this happens when a device is powered down, manually or due to a bad connection or loss of source power.


Accounts

I purchased SIMs from Aeris Neo and they're active on the network. If I purchase SIMs from DigiKey or another Neo distributor will they be added to my account?

No. Accounts are created for each distributor. In this case, you will have an account for Aeris Neo and an account for DigiKey Neo.