thethings.iO easyGateway

As many of you will know, this year part of 2G networks are being eliminated in different countries despite the moratorium imposed at the time. In this sense, integrators and manufacturers have focused on this fact, advancing to what had to happen one day and left devices ready for this. Manufacturing and designing equivalent devices with NBIoT, Lorawan and even 4G connectivity.

Even so, in many contexts the change from 2G to 3G or 4G had not been made due to the battery consumption that this change implied on the device, which in many cases must be autonomous and without the possibility of being connected to the electrical network to remain on, so that the best alternative to adapt these devices in case of not having good Sigfox or Lorawan coverage is undoubtedly the NBIoT connectivity.

At the level of data volume and directly impacting the cost of connected things, the UDP protocol is undoubtedly the most widely used protocol.

That said, many times we find companies that do not have the capacity or sufficient volume to be able to modify or customize the connection protocol or what is the same, the shape of the plot and the data that is sent. It is for this reason that thethings.iO, advancing the change of all these devices, launches a new service that helps and allows all these companies to be able to integrate their devices seamlessly with the platform: thethings.iO easyGateway.

What is easyGateway?

easyGateway is the new system of thethings.iO to integrate all your NBIoT / UDP devices that come with factory firmware and cannot modify their protocol to connect to thethings.iO with the defined protocol.

How does it work and what is its performance?

Very easy. Your productId will have a dedicated UDP port only for your product, so you will have a highly available communication channel independent of the rest of the devices or server load that allows you to have the data received immediately available on the platform. As you will see later, it is for this reason that the easyGateway service is a service that is billed separately but that is only € 10 / month regardless of the number of devices you connect or have running without associated development costs.

How much does the development of my custom easyGateway cost for my product?

  1. easyGateway is designed for quick and easy startups. No associated development costs that increase the initial cost of implementation and allow our customers to launch MVPs without an initial overhead of preparation expenses. The cost of the service is established to be able to reserve the port and dedicate a single channel for your product without queues with other devices.

Is easyGateway free then?

No. At the development level we want you to start quickly and be able to demonstrate to your clients that your integration and your project are working correctly, so the development is cost 0 and is available in 48h-72h from its activation. Once activated, easyGateway is billed monthly.

The devices with which I use easyGateway, how do I register them?

With easyGateway this process is facilitated in a fully automated way as in the case of Sigfox. Once this feature is activated, any device that you connect configured to the port indicated by the platform will appear automatically in the things manager panel with the name associated with the serial number or identifier sent by the device.

And the data?

Once the frame and the device have been converted in the things manager of thethings.iO, you can decode the received frame as a normal and simple payload in the same way as with connected Sigfox or Lora devices.

How can I learn more?

Soon we will post more information on our developers.thethings.io page so that you can follow the integration tutorial (estimated integration time <10 minutes) and you can find examples on our blog with the steps to follow  for its use.

When will it be available?

The system is now available by sending the frame format to easyGateway@thethings.io . The automated system for generating gateways through the panel will be available in early 2021 so the activation will be completely instantaneous and automated.

What does thethings.iO easyGateway mean?

A before and after in the integration of NBIoT systems since with absolutely no development on the device, with zero cost of firmware or hardware customization and with the simple configuration of the assigned port ( the same of the productId ) and the server easyGateway.thethings.iO you already have your IoT system started in less than 24 hours. All this without touching or paying a single development line on the device. You buy your devices from your NBIoT device provider, configure the connection and you’re done. Your data and your NBIoT devices with your own IoT platform in a matter of hours!

 

The Benefits of IoT in the Cold Chain

The cold chain is a supply chain in which the temperature of the products must be controlled. Cold chains are commonly associated with the pharmaceutical and food industries. Food losses are astronomical, largely due to cold chain problems.

The cold chain is big business and the stakes are high. The implications of a poorly maintained and supervised cold chain go far beyond monetary losses. Foods or medications that are unknowingly outside temperature tolerances can pose a hidden risk. They can become contaminated with bacteria even if they are not visibly spoiled. After reaching the hands of a consumer or patient, these contaminated products can cause serious illness or even death.

For this reason, pharmaceutical and food companies do their best to establish cold chains that are rigorously managed and traced.

So what role does IoT play in improving cold chain safety and efficiency? An obvious contribution lies in the temperature control sensors. These relatively small GPS / GSM enabled sensors can be placed on a pallet or box. They provide live temperature readings throughout the journey from one end to the other.

At the very least, real-time temperature tracking of products enables cold chain managers to identify shipments that have fallen outside of temperature tolerances for a period long enough to be considered spoiled. Those goods can be withdrawn from the supply chain once they reach an intermediate point or final destination and destroyed before causing harm to a consumer.

Better yet, by receiving timely alerts about out-of-tolerance temperatures, a cold chain manager can quickly initiate corrective actions that prevent spoilage entirely.

A digital supply chain solution, which uses predictive analytics, can anticipate a shipment’s scheduled route to identify problems before they occur. By plotting the predicted temperature along the predicted location of a transportation mode over time, a digital supply chain solution can highlight shipments at risk even before they leave.

A digital supply chain solution could also suggest a change to a route, where the expected temperatures are more favorable than the original route.

With thehtings.io you can collect the data from your sensors (we are agnostic to HW) and customize the application to monitor your KPIs  and add the BI needed to take the right actions and decisions for your business.  

 

Connecting ESP32 to thethings.iO using CoAP

In this post we will explain how to connect via CoAP to the Thethings.io platform through ESP32-S2. A high-performance IoT module, with which the Chinese giant Espressif will try to reduce the TTM (time to market) of the new IoT products that are yet to come.

 

Step by Step tutorial

First of all, check that the terminal has Java SE (11 or higher) and Python (3.5 or higher). Otherwise, install the most recent version by clicking on each of the links.

Download the ESP-IDF Tools Installer package that contains the essential tools for programming and debugging the ESP32-S2. To avoid problems, it is recommended that you install in an address that does not contain blank spaces.

Next, install the Eclipse IDE development environment (version 2020-06 CDT). Download the Eclipse Installer program (here) and install the Eclipse IDE for C / C ++ Developers package. Note: do not change the default address to avoid problems.

If you don’t have the Git version manager, install the most recent version by clicking on the link. Once installed, clone the ESP-IDF 4.2 repository where the ESP32-S2 module libraries are located (here).

From the Eclipse IDE program, first install the plugin, and then the tools. Instructions can be found here.

Take the ESP32-S2-Saola-1 kit from Espressif and connect it via USB to the terminal. From here, you can:

  1. Create a project.
  2. Create a project with a template.
  3. Open a project.

 

CREATE A PROJECT

Projects are easily created by selecting the File> New> Espressif IDF Project tab. Enter the name and click Finish.

 

CREATE A PROJECT WITH TEMPLATE

Template projects are the best option for both novice users, who want to discover first-hand the potential of the ESP32-S2, as well as experts or professionals, who appreciate having  parts of the code already made to quickly move to the testing phase.

 

Select the File> New> Espressif IDF Project. Give the project a name and click Next>. Mark the top checkbox and choose one of the many examples available. Note: some only work for ESP32, which is the pre-ESP32-S2 chipset.

 

OPEN A PROJECT

Thethings.io has created a sample project (ttio_coap_client) to show platform users how to use the ESP32-S2-Saola-1 kit to take temperature samples and upload them to the cloud via CoAP protocol. To download it click here https://github.com/theThings/ESP32_COAP

Note: It is important to save the project in the folder configured as a workspace in the Eclipse IDE.

Once downloaded select File> Import…. A new window will appear. Select the option Espressif / Existing IDF Project and click Next>. Indicate the location and click Finish.

Before compiling, the user needs to fill in three code definitions. From the project explorer window (located on the left of the screen) locate and open the main file, main.c. Definitions are at the beginning.

Write the identifier and password of the Wi-Fi from which you want to make the connection and the token number assigned to the thing, which will be responsible for storing the samples received by CoAP. Note: if the Wi-Fi does not have a password, leave the space empty (“”).

New users of the Thethings.io platform who need to create an account can do so at https://thethings.io and follow the steps. After registration is complete, create a new IoT product through the Things Manager screen and select JSON as the product type.

 

Once the main.c file has been modified, click on the hammer icon (above the project explorer) to compile. Verify that the process has finished without errors or warnings.

Next, start recording the kit by clicking on the play icon (located next to the hammer). Once completed, you can see from the Things Details screen how a temperature record has been created, which will be updated every 5 minutes.

Optionally, the application can be tracked via USB by opening the terminal window. Select the Window> Show View> Terminal. A new window will appear with various icons in the upper right. Click the first of all (the one that looks like a screen). A new configuration window will appear. Select the port to which the kit is connected and leave the rest of the default values. Click OK to start communication.

Use thethings.iO, the simplest enterprise IoT platform. If you have any doubts please contact us at hello@thethings.io

 

The Future of Internet of Things

The tech world we’ve all been dreaming of has finally arrived, it’s smart and full of “things”, the Internet of Things. According to statistics, there are 26.66 billion devices connected to IoT worldwide. Which statistically leaves all citizens of the world with at least 3 devices.

The number of the Internet of Things is projected to grow to 75 billion devices by 2025. But with all these mind-boggling numbers, only 0.06% of the “things” that could be connected to the internet actually are. This leaves a lot of space and potential for the development of the Internet of Things. The future of IoT looks quite promising. They already impact our lives, homes, cities we live in, how we work, travel, or interact with the world around us.

It is projected to become the world’s largest device market, adding $ 1.7 trillion in value to the global economy in the next two years. But what does this emerging industry mean for the future of your organization?

Internet of Things technologies will lead to a number of innovations that will have a significant effect on companies of all sizes and industries, including:

Greater efficiency for business operations: Connected devices will enable companies to leverage data to improve their efficiency and effectiveness.

New business models and revenue streams – New processes will speed time to market and respond more quickly to customer needs.

Global visibility – Large companies will be able to better track efficiency across multiple locations and across the supply chain.

Stronger cybersecurity – More data means greater potential for cybercriminals to steal sensitive business information.

The future of IoT is bright and it is rapidly evolving from a technology experiment to a strategic imperative.

Connecting ESP32 to thethings.iO using MQTT

In this post we will explain how to connect and ESP-32 to thethings.iO platform through and ESP-32 from Espressif. Keep in mind that the project used as an example could be found in our 

repo:  https://github.com/theThings/ESP32_MQTT

Let’s go!

First of all, take a look on the requirements (for more explanations you can visit our previous blog post HERE https://blog.thethings.io/http-integration-with-esp32-s2/

  • Java SE (11 or higher) 
  • Python (3.5 or higher). Otherwise, install the most recent version by clicking on each of the links.
  • ESP-IDF Tools Installer 
  • Eclipse IDE for C / C ++ Developers package with the necessary plugin that can be found here.
  • Git version manager, install the most recent version by clicking on the link. Once installed, clone the ESP-IDF 4.2 repository where the ESP32-S2 module libraries are located (here).

With all the needed software installed we can start to play with the ESP-32 and thethings.io platform:

Take the ESP32-S2-Saola-1 kit from Espressif and connect it via USB to the terminal. From here, you can:

  1. Create a project.
  2. Create a project with a template.
  3. Open a project.

CREATE A PROJECT

Projects are easily created by selecting the File> New> Espressif IDF Project tab. Enter the name and click Finish.

CREATE A PROJECT WITH TEMPLATE

Template projects are the best option for both novice users, who want to discover first-hand the potential of the ESP32-S2, as well as experts or professionals, who appreciate having  parts of the code already made to quickly move to the testing phase.

CREATE A PROJECT WITH TEMPLATE

Template projects are the best option for both novice users, who want to discover first-hand the potential of the ESP32-S2, as well as experts or professionals, who appreciate having  parts of the code already made to quickly move to the testing phase.

 

Before compiling, the user needs to fill in three code definitions. From the project explorer window (located on the left of the screen) locate and open the main file, main.c. Definitions are at the beginning.

Write the identifier and password of the Wi-Fi from which you want to make the connection and the token number assigned to the thing, which will be responsible for storing the samples received by MQTT. Note: if the Wi-Fi does not have a password, leave the space empty (“”).

New users of the Thethings.io platform who need to create an account can do so at https://thethings.io and follow the steps. After registration is complete, create a new IoT product through the Things Manager screen and select JSON as the product type.

Once the main.c file has been modified, click on the hammer icon (above the project explorer) to compile. Verify that the process has finished without errors or warnings.

Next, start recording the kit by clicking on the play icon (located next to the hammer). Once completed, you can see from the Things Details screen how a temperature record has been created, which will be updated every 5 minutes.

 

Optionally, the application can be tracked via USB by opening the terminal window. Select the Window> Show View> Terminal. A new window will appear with various icons in the upper right. Click the first at all (the one that looks like a screen). A new configuration window will appear. Select the port to which the kit is connected and leave the rest of the default values. Click OK to start communication.

Use thethings.iO, the simplest enterprise IoT platform. If you have any doubts please contact us at hello@thethings.io

 

Retail digital transformation in Covid Times

Right now, a consequence of the Covid-19 pandemic, it has presented companies with a sudden paradigm shift in which digital transformation has experienced exponential growth and technology plays an even more fundamental role in managing this complex context. The technology companies also have to serve to give us solutions to struggle against Covid.

There are solutions that allow us to understand the progression of mobility applied both to this sector and to those in which customer service or points of sale are essential, whether they are bank branches, service stations, supermarkets, pharmacies, distribution chains or department stores. 

The information offered helps the client, for example, to adapt the product offer because he knows the profile of the people who pass through his space, stop at the window and enter. That is, you could tailor the storefront offering to the interests of your target audience (for example, women ages 30-45)…

Furthermore, with this solution, the companies will not only understand the new mobility patterns of the users, but will also compare that mobility and the behavior of potential clients in different periods of time: during and in the current stage after Covid-19 or in the new normal to be able to change their strategy and be able to control the capacity in their stores or spaces.

 

HTTP integration with ESP32-S2

We started a new stage with great enthusiasm and new projects…keep you posted! 🙂

We are working on a new generation of content, we hope you like it!

Let’s start with a juicy snack: how to connect your ESP32-S2- based devices to thehtings.io via HTTP.

You, our devoted followers and valued customers, you are our biggest value. We will be delighted to listen to you: share your ideas and topics you would like us to write about at hello@thethings.io

We will try to carry them out as much as possible.

And without further ado … let’s get started!

 

Check out our repo:  https://github.com/theThings/ESP32_HTTP

In this post we will explain how to connect via HTTP to the Thethings.io platform through ESP32-S2. A high-performance IoT module, with which the Chinese giant Espressif will try to reduce the TTM (time to market) of the new IoT products that are yet to come.

Step by Step tutorial

First of all, check that the terminal has Java SE (11 or higher) and Python (3.5 or higher). Otherwise, install the most recent version by clicking on each of the links.

Download the ESP-IDF Tools Installer package that contains the essential tools for programming and debugging the ESP32-S2. To avoid problems, it is recommended that you install in an address that does not contain blank spaces.

Next, install the Eclipse IDE development environment (version 2020-06 CDT). Download the Eclipse Installer program (here) and install the Eclipse IDE for C / C ++ Developers package. Note: do not change the default address to avoid problems.

If you don’t have the Git version manager, install the most recent version by clicking on the link. Once installed, clone the ESP-IDF 4.2 repository where the ESP32-S2 module libraries are located (here).

From the Eclipse IDE program, first install the plugin, and then the tools. Instructions can be found here.

Take the ESP32-S2-Saola-1 kit from Espressif and connect it via USB to the terminal. From here, you can:

  1. Create a project.
  2. Create a project with a template.
  3. Open a project.

CREATE A PROJECT

Projects are easily created by selecting the File> New> Espressif IDF Project tab. Enter the name and click Finish.

CREATE A PROJECT WITH TEMPLATE

Template projects are the best option for both novice users, who want to discover first-hand the potential of the ESP32-S2, as well as experts or professionals, who appreciate having  parts of the code already made to quickly move to the testing phase.


Select the File> New> Espressif IDF Project. Give the project a name and click Next>. Mark the top checkbox and choose one of the many examples available. Note: some only work for ESP32, which is the pre-ESP32-S2 chipset.

OPEN A PROJECT

Thethings.io has created a sample project (ttio_http_client) to show platform users how to use the ESP32-S2-Saola-1 kit to take temperature samples and upload them to the cloud via HTTP protocol. To download it click here https://github.com/theThings/ESP32_HTTP. Note: It is important to save the project in the folder configured as a workspace in the Eclipse IDE.

Once downloaded select File> Import…. A new window will appear. Select the option Espressif / Existing IDF Project and click Next>. Indicate the location and click Finish.

Before compiling, the user needs to fill in three code definitions. From the project explorer window (located on the left of the screen) locate and open the main file, main.c. Definitions are at the beginning.

Write the identifier and password of the Wi-Fi from which you want to make the connection and the token number assigned to the thing, which will be responsible for storing the samples received by HTTP. Note: if the Wi-Fi does not have a password, leave the space empty (“”).

New users of the Thethings.io platform who need to create an account can do so at https://thethings.io and follow the steps. After registration is complete, create a new IoT product through the Things Manager screen and select JSON as the product type.

Once the main.c file has been modified, click on the hammer icon (above the project explorer) to compile. Verify that the process has finished without errors or warnings.

Next, start recording the kit by clicking on the play icon (located next to the hammer). Once completed, you can see from the Things Details screen how a temperature record has been created, which will be updated every 5 minutes.

Optionally, the application can be tracked via USB by opening the terminal window. Select the Window> Show View> Terminal. A new window will appear with various icons in the upper right. Click the first of all (the one that looks like a screen). A new configuration window will appear. Select the port to which the kit is connected and leave the rest of the default values. Click OK to start communication.

Use thethings.iO, the simplest enterprise IoT platform. If you have any doubts please contact us at hello@thethings.io

 

Webinar with Sigfox: Learn how to connect a Sigfox Device at thethings.iO IoT Platform

Last week our CEO Marc Pous was invited to make a webinar at the Sigfox Webinar Series. Marc showcased in about 30 minutes how to connect a really simple Sigfox device to thethings.iO. During the webinar Marc explained how to do Sigfox parsers, dashboards, alerts and jobs on Cloud Code. Feel free to watch it here:

Find here the slides that Marc presented during the webinar:

All the code of the webinar is here.

Probably one of the most interesting part of the video was the Q&A at the end of the webinar. Nevertheless if you have a Sigfox project, feel free to contact us and we will gladly help you to succeed with thethings.iO IoT platform.