Creating the ITEM Industry Standard, One Patent at a Time

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Through hard work, risk-taking, and imagination, brand leaders strive to make an impact for their clients. That’s how some of the best products are born. The iPhone quickly comes to mind as a shining example of product innovation. According to CNBC, “The last 10 years could be viewed as the iPhone decade — when smartphones went mainstream, created billion-dollar corporations, rearranged existing industries, and changed the world.” In reimagining computing to something we do in the palm of our hands, even Steve Jobs could never have fully envisioned the ultimate power of his iconic invention.

While necessity may be the mother of invention, curiosity and audacity are what fuels it forward. Prior to its launch, no one ever said, “I need an iPhone,” but through the power of ‘what if’ some very smart people had the tenacity to build a better mousetrap. That’s how inventiveness works, and I’m proud to lead a company that’s been built on a culture of innovation, creating ‘firsts,’ and shaping an industry to help businesses better manage their operations for smarter results.

Tangoe has led the industry in changing the way we uncover and utilize data through software and business processes to fuel our clients’ success. At the core of our business model is a commitment to anticipating what’s next and building what’s needed. It’s why in the past 20 years, Tangoe (and its acquired businesses) have been granted 65 patents in telecom expense management (TEM), mobile, cloud, and robotic process automation (RPA). That’s more patents than our top five competitors combined.

As the popular saying goes, “Build a better mousetrap, and the world will beat a path to your door.” It works for both customers and the competition. Imitation may be the finest form of flattery, but look-alikes can be hard to discern when choosing a business partner, especially when they mimic well-known products while avoiding the intellectual property rights relied on by brand owners. As a result, while some products appear to be doppelgängers, they may have some telltale differences from the original. This is true in our industry as well. 

Our clients tell us that a combination of our smart software platforms, services and the incomparable intellect of our Tangoe Advisory Services (TAS) team makes a big difference in delivering quality TEM, Cloud Expense Management (CEM), Mobility Management Services (MMS), and IoT management services. Tangoe has evolved the TEM industry into IT expense management (ITEM), moving with – and ahead of – the times by anticipating what’s on the horizon. In fact, just this week, we announced that the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) has awarded us yet another new patent

The newly awarded patent expands Tangoe’s leadership position in using and applying RPA to the expense management arena. Using intelligent controls, Tangoe can minimize the need for manual intervention, thereby reducing errors and speeding up processing times. The use of RPA to automate data collection also allows Tangoe to collect and process data more efficiently, further extending its competitive advantage in a market where rapid and reliable processing of invoices is truly paramount. 

While we’ve been at this for 20 years, Tangoe most recently has been part of the ‘Great Acceleration,’ where tech innovation greatly increased during the pandemic period from 2020 until today. In 2021 alone, our company was granted 10 new patents, achieving 15% of its historic collection of intellectual property. These latest patents exemplify our continued legacy of innovation, which sets Tangoe apart from the competition while helping to advance the industry in the process. When combined with our longevity, experience, global reach, talented employees, and industry partners, Tangoe’s investment in innovation continues to set the industry standard. That’s a good thing for everyone – our customers, our competition, and society.  

While the iPhone may be the most impactful consumer tech product over the past decade, Tangoe is making a B2B impact in an environment where technology is at the heart of every business. By simplifying, managing, and optimizing increasingly complex, tech-enabled business operations, we are playing a mission critical role in the hybrid work renaissance, helping our cloud-first customers manage dispersed workforces, a multitude of connected devices, and IoT fleets. Patents take time before they see the light of day. We’ve been ready for the future that represents this moment, and we’re filing the next wave of IP patents for the yet unforeseen future tomorrow may bring.