Insights & Resources • PUBLISHED 11/3/2020

#1 Hologram IoT Alternative

Considering connectivity providers for your next IoT project? Compare Hologram and Telnyx on features, costs and dev experience.

By Pete Christianson

Hologram IoT Alternative

On the face of it, Hologram and Telnyx are actually pretty different looking organizations. Telnyx operates in the CPaaS space—providing a range of connectivity APIs that enable developers to easily embed voice, messaging, fax, webRTC, networking, video, and wireless capabilities into their applications. Hologram, on the other hand, just offers wireless connectivity.

Both Telnyx and Hologram offer a cellular IoT SIM card and global wireless coverage. So, let’s take a look at how those offerings compare, so you can make an informed decision about which cellular IoT connectivity provider is right for you.

Telnyx vs. Hologram Cellular IoT Feature Comparison

Hologram and Telnyx both have the basic features to enable global wireless connectivity, with network redundancy, seamless carrier switching and the ability to manage SIMs via User Interface or programmatically via API.

However, there are a few areas where Telnyx has differentiated its offering, specifically developing features to address the core challenges organizations face when implementing IoT solutions. Limitations around security and network control are acting as a real barrier to the adoption of IoT—this is where Telnyx’s ability to provide enhanced security via private LTE networks and greater network control via over-the-air active steering can make a big difference.

We’ll take a closer look at what those features are, and what they mean for organizations implementing IoT solutions.

Telnyx vs. Hologram: Cellular IoT Connectivity Features
Global coverageYesYes
SMS integrationYesYes
Programmatic APIYesYes
SIM lifecycle managementYesYes
Private LTE networkYesNo
LPWAN accessYesYes
Automatic carrier switchingYesYes
OTA based active steeringYesNo

Key Wireless Features Explained

Private LTE networks

The number one barrier to IoT adoption is security. 86% of enterprises using IoT say their IoT deployments have been delayed or constrained by security concerns and 50% cite security as their biggest challenge to successful IoT implementation.

Private LTE networks are an ideal solution to effectively address these concerns, bypassing the inherent risks of the public internet with secure, private connections.

While Hologram is unable to support enterprise-grade security with private LTE networks, Telnyx has the advantage of being built on a private IP network. And fortunately, private LTE networks are relatively easy to set up on Telnyx.

A Virtual Cross Connect (VXC) connects the SIM card to your cloud service provider, joining traffic from our Evolved Packet Core (EPC) directly to your cloud infrastructure. The Evolved Packet Core is the Telnyx Wireless engine - it’s the place where all traffic gets routed and all SIMs get registered to the network.

Telnyx Private LTE networks infrastructure

Not only is a private LTE network more secure, it also offers users greater control over, and access to their connection. You can learn more about the benefits of private LTE networks by reading this article or sign up for our beta.

Over-the-air (OTA) based active steering

Organizations today expect wireless coverage across hundreds of carriers, and automatic carrier switching as standard. Both Hologram and Telnyx meet these essential needs with coverage across over hundreds of networks globally and enabling carrier switching automatically, removing many of the complexities of managing multiple carriers.

The challenge for organizations is that current providers often use automatic carrier switching as a way to reduce their own costs, preferencing low-cost networks at the expense of quality. Telnyx Wireless solves this problem in two ways; first, by always preferencing the highest quality available network, and second, by empowering users with the control to configure their SIMs to preference specific networks in real-time via over-the-air updates.

You can learn more about how to update the network preferences on Telnyx Wireless SIMs in the Telnyx Developer Center.

Telnyx Mission Control Portal OTA Active Steering Screenshot

The bottom line: While Hologram offers many of the basic features you’d expect of an IoT connectivity solution if you’re looking for enhanced security options or more network control, Telnyx is the clear choice.

Telnyx vs. Hologram Wireless Pricing Comparison

So, how do Hologram and Telnyx compare when it comes to SIM costs, data costs and monthly platform charges? Both providers offer volume and committed-use discounts, but for the purposes of this comparison we’ll just look at entry-level pricing.

Hologram breaks its pricing plans into either flexible data or high volume data (which is then further broken down by global or US-only plans). Telnyx simply charges a compelling flat rate for data depending on the country it’s being used in.

What’s really worth comparing are the effective prices per megabyte of data. If you’re using data in the US for example, Hologram offers the flexible data plan at $0.40/MB or high volume plans ranging from $0.20/MB to $0.16/MB. By comparison, the Telnyx rate is just $0.01/MB—significantly lower than any of the Hologram options.

Even if you choose to forego carrier redundancy with Hologram and restrict your coverage to a single carrier, the lowest effective rate per MB ($0.014) is still higher than the Telnyx flat rate.

Telnyx vs. Hologram: Cellular IoT Connectivity Pricing
SIM card$1.00 per SIM$5.00 per SIM
Cost per active device$1.50 per month$2.00 per month
Data usageZone-based data plans: Zone 1 $0.01/MB Zone 2 $0.03/MB Zone 3 $0.06/MB Zone 4 $0.10/MB Note: Zone 1 includes the US, the UK and EU countries. Flexible data plan: $0.40/MB flat rate Global high-volume monthly data plans:$50/m for 250MB--$0.20/MB$95/m for 500MB--$0.19/MB$180/m for 1GB--$0.18/MB$350/m for 2GB--$0.017/MB$800/m for 5GB--$0.16/MBUS only high-volume monthly data plans:$17.50/m for 250MB--$0.07/MB$32/m for 500MB--$0.064/MB$60/m for 1GB--$0.06/MB$100/m for 2GB--$0.05/MB$225/m for 5GB--$0.045/MB

Prices as displayed on Hologram website, correct as at 10/27/20.

The bottom line: While Hologram and Telnyx pricing plans look different, particularly when it comes to data usage, once you start comparing using the effective rate per megabyte you can easily expose the price differences between the two. Telnyx offers a significantly lower one-time charge per SIM, as well as more competitive data usage prices -- especially in the US, the UK and Europe.

Why Developers Choose Telnyx Over Hologram

Developers choose Telnyx as their IoT connectivity provider for a number of reasons. First, because building, scaling and monitoring their IoT applications is made easy through Telnyx features, and second because Telnyx offers greater security and network control than the alternatives.

Easy configuration and monitoring

  • Granular usage data: access detailed usage data for granular insight into SIM behavior.
  • API control: experience full programmatic configurability via our RESTful API .
  • Bulk SIM management: group SIM cards as needed and manage them in bulk i.e. with shared data limits or network preferences.

Network redundancy and control

  • OTA based active steering: remotely configure your SIMs to preference specific networks
  • Private LTE networks: Connect SIMs to your corporate network via our private IP network, bypassing the public internet for end-to-end private connectivity and enterprise-grade security.
  • LTE-M access: Gain access to 25+ LTE-M networks globally to power your IoT products.

Telnyx also offers free in-house technical support 24/7/365, and has a dedicated developer slack channel where you can get access to technical support, as well as engineering teams and product managers.

Telnyx vs. Hologram for user reviews

You can check out some reviews of Hologram on independent software review platform G2. While Hologram doesn’t have many reviews, you can check them out here, their average rating is just 2.9 out of 5. Telnyx, on the other hand, has an average rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars. Take a look about what customers have to say about working with Telnyx by clicking the link below.

Read Telnyx reviews on G2

Ready to get started? Order a Telnyx Wireless SIM card today.

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