Join us online on Thursday 24th March to discover innovative LoRaWAN® deployments and explore the most advanced smart solutions at The Things Conference Devices virtual event.
Boost your IoT skillset, and learn how to get started with the best devices for your use cases while networking with leading global LoRaWAN® experts. This is the greatest way to learn the latest advice and techniques to accelerate your IoT projects.
Register today to learn the ins and outs of working with top-notch LoRa devices and implementing LoRaWAN® to your applications.
When it comes to selecting your preferred IoT connectivity there are a number of things you may want to consider. To help simplify this process, we’ve compiled a short guide to outline the options available and our top tips to think about when selecting the best option for your solutions.
There are numerous ways to connect your IoT devices, some will require a SIM card whereas others will require a gateway, or even connect to a satellite! The type of IoT connectivity you select is critical to the success of your IoT project and each option comes with its own range of benefits. The key here is to really understand what your requirements are and if your chosen connectivity will support your objectives.
What options are out there?
Here at Alliot we specialise in two key technologies: LoRaWAN® and NB-IoT/LTE-M (cellular IoT connectivity). But there are other options out there, these include:
Wired connections were among the first methods of connectivity used in the early days of IoT. This tends to work well for items that will remain in a fixed position, but there’s little flexibility and there are much more efficient options now available.
We’ve all become well accustomed to connecting our devices via WiFi and it often works well for simple home applications. WiFi however is notorious for its limitations with regards to range. Using WiFi for your IoT connectivity would require lots of access points to ensure its reach and it will also eat up a lot of battery power. Battery life is incredibly important when it comes to IoT sensors, especially if you’re installing solutions across multiple sites – replacing all those batteries would prove very time consuming!
If you’re looking to monitor parameters in the middle of the ocean, satellite connectivity is the best option. There are geostationary satellites in orbit connecting devices around the world. It’s also reported that low earth orbit satellites are on the cards for companies such as SpaceX.
What options do Alliot Offer when it comes to IoT Connectivity?
Now this is our bread and butter! Low power Wide Area Networks were specifically designed for IoT use. LoRaWAN® devices offer long battery life by periodically transmitting small packets of data to a connected gateway. These gateways then connect to a LoRaWAN® network which offer a long range of up to 10km (depending on location) and don’t interfere with any existing networks or infrastructure.
Cellular IoT such as Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) and LTE-M offer a great alternative to LoRaWAN®. NB-IoT is the newest kid on the block when it comes to IoT connectivity. Like LoRaWAN®, it offers an excellent coverage range and supports a long battery life.
However, unlike WiFi or LPWAN solutions using ethernet powered gateways, cellular doesn’t require an ethernet connection. Connectivity is instead supported by piggybacking on mobile networks. These devices require the use of a cellular IoT SIM card.
The main difference between NB-IoT and LTE-M is the support of mobility on the network. If you’re looking to track assets across multiple locations for example, LTE-M is likely to be the best option for you as it is better suited to faster moving assets that you need more frequent messages from as it supports handover.
Things to Consider…
There are a few things we’d recommend you take into consideration when selecting the type of IoT connectivity for your solutions.
We’ve all experienced the loss of phone signal in remote locations. Sometimes cellular coverage can be weaker or unavailable in certain areas. Before going full steam ahead with a cellular IoT solution, it’s important to check the coverage available; we can help you with this.
In some areas, LoRaWAN® could well be the better option for you as you have the ability to create your own network therefore enabling you to ensure a relatively stable coverage across all types of locations. With LoRaWAN® you have the flexibility to create your own coverage by installing gateways, there are no licensing costs for the radio, and you can install them anywhere you want!
Cost & Scalability
Both LoRaWAN® and cellular IoT are future-proof in terms of scalability. With NB-IoT and LTE-M you have the ongoing cost of your SIM cards. The cost of SIM connectivity is low and given the size of your solution can be very cost-effective when compared to the costs involved with setting up a LoRaWAN® solution. Cellular IoT is great option where you only want a very small number of sensors per site, since you don’t need anything other than the sensor and a SIM contract which costs pence per month, per device. In these instances, installing gateways would be prohibitively expensive for a small number of sensors. Plus, you have the added benefit that the network is the responsibility of the mobile network provider!
If, however your solution is going to have thousands of connected devices, LoRaWAN® could prove to be more cost-effective for you as it operates on free (unlicensed) frequencies which you manage yourself so there are no upfront licensing costs to use the technology and you can potentially connect thousands of sensors to one gateway.
Both NB-IoT and LoRaWAN® solutions are simple to install. We can even ship devices to you ready to plug & play! LoRaWAN® gateways offer coverage between 10km and 2km based on the installation environment. This is ideal for monitoring sensors deployed within this distance. However, if you’re looking to track assets throughout the country for example, LTE-M may offer a better alternative.
Whatever your requirements we’re here to help. Both cellular IoT and LoRaWAN® offer excellent options when it comes to connecting your IoT solutions. Get in touch today to discuss your IoT connectivity.
Our experts are on hand to help you every step of the way Lets talk
You’re invited to join our exclusive live event! Discover plug & play indoor air quality monitoring in the Alliot powered by myDevices live event with Synetica.
Air quality has become increasingly important in areas such as schools, offices, buildings and other high-risk environments. Join us on 22nd February at 4 pm GMT | 8 am PT to discover how our plug & play solutions enable you to monitor and report on the critical air quality parameters such as temperature, humidity, particulate matters and VOCs.
Once logged into the AWS IoT platform, go to the Manage section and click on the Things tab. Then click on Create things and select Create single thing. Press next.
In the ‘Things’ properties section give your ‘Thing’ (no pun intended!) a name. Then expand the Thing Type tab and click on Create thing type.
You will then need to give a name to your Thing type and expand the Searchable attributes section. Add 3 attributes by clicking the Add attribute button. Name it as per the picture below, then click Create.
You should see the green ribbon on top of your screen saying that you successfully created a thing type. Wait for a second and under the thing type section you should see 3 boxes called Searchable attribute and Value – optional next to them. Fill in the values as per the picture below.
Now expand the Non-searchable thing attributes tab. Create 2 more attributes called app_eui and app_key and type the app_eui and app_key of your device. For example:
Once this is complete, scroll down and click Next. You can select Auto-generate a new certificate tab and click Create thing.
Creating the MQTT Shadow and Manage Certificates
Go to the thing you have created – Manage section > Things tab and click on the Thing name. Go to the Interact tab and click on view settings. Copy the Endpoint and save it in a safe place as you will need it to create a push config at a later stage.
Go back to your thing and click on the Device Shadows tab. Click Create shadow, give it a name and click Create. Now you can go to the shadow you’ve created and copy the MQTT topic prefix. Save it somewhere as it will be needed to configure Push config at a later stage.
Now, go back to your Thing and go to the Certificates tab. Click Create Certificate button.
In the pop-up window click Activate certificate then Download the following: Device Certificate, Public key file, Private key file and RSA 2048 bit key: Amazon Root CA 1
Once you have that downloaded, click done.
Now from the left-hand side list, select the Secure section and choose the Policies tab.
Create a policy by clicking the button in the top right corner. Give it a name, and then make sure to sign up to all of the Policy actions starting with words iot: The Policy effect should be set to Allow and the Policy resource should be a * symbol.
Once you have all of that, scroll to the bottom of the page and click Save.
Now, go back to the Things tab, your thing, Certificates tab, click on your certificate. On the top of the page, click the Actions button and select Attach Policy from the drop-down menu. A pop up will appear where you need to select your newly created policy and click Attach policies.
Creating a Push-Configuration on Wanesy Management Centre
Now is a good moment to add the device on to Wanesy. If you already have a device added to a different cluster and want to use it to push data to AWS, create a new cluster and move the device into it. Let’s now create a push configuration.
Go to Clusters under the Administration section. At the top of the screen choose the Push configurations tab and then click the + icon in the bottom right corner.
In the pop-up window, give your push config a name, select MQTT type of push and Payload detail level. Then click Next. In the Host box, paste the previously copied Endpoint link.
*If you can’t find it in the AWS go to the following path and copy the Endpoint: Things > Your thing > Interact > View Settings > Endpoint
In the Port box type 8883 The Client ID is the name of the thing on AWS. You can change Keep alive to 60 seconds. Tick Enable box under TLS section. Then click Next
On the next page titled Security don’t type anything, just click Next. On the following page title SSL, you need to add the Certificate, Private Key and Certificate Authorities store. All of that you have previously downloaded from AWS. Just click Choose File and select the Certificate. Repeat the process for the Private Key and Certificate Authorities store (CA). Then click Next.
On the next page called Topics you need to type the Data Up topic. You can find it on AWS, copy and paste it here.
* To find the Data Up topic on AWS, go to the following path: Things > Your thing > Device Shadows > Your device shadow > and copy the MQTT topic prefix
Paste it in a Data Up topic box on Wanesy and click Next.
On the next page titled Messages don’t fill any boxes, just click Validate.
Once you have completed all the steps, go to Clusters under the Administration section and find your cluster. Click on the pencil icon to edit it.
In the pop-up window, enable push and select the push config from the dropdown list. Then click Validate.
Now you can go to the Push configurations tab on the top of the screen and find your push configuration. You can click on the heart icon; this will test that the push config is configured properly. Once you click that, you should get a pop-up message on a green background saying that the push config is correctly configured.
You can now go to your device data up section and see if the data is being pushed. To check this, click End-Devices under Management, then click on the DevEui and Data Up tab. Wait for the next message to arrive and you should see the state Yes in the Pushed column.
Receiving Data on AWS
Once you have the push configuration set up correctly and you can see the data being pushed from Wanesy, to AWS.
To do view this, in AWS, go to the Things tab, Your thing, Activity tab. Then click MQTT test client.
Once you click that, a new tab should open in your browser and you should see the test client. You should already be subscribing to all IoT topics. In case that is not happening, go back to the previous AWS tab and go to the following path:
Things > Your thing > Device Shadows > Your device shadow and copy the MQTT topic prefix
Now go back to the tab where you have the MQTT test client opened and click to Subscribe to a topic. In the empty field below paste the MQTT topic prefix and click Subscribe.
Now wait until the next message arrives from Wanesy to AWS and it will sync and show up the current information and all previous messages.
You can compare messages between Wanesy and AWS to check if they are the same.
“How To” Integrate Kerlink Wanesy with Amazon AWS Video
To summarise this article up to this point you can watch the above video.
To help avoid any disruption, we’ve put together a short overview of what these changes mean and what you can expect from them.
Product Change Notification – MultiTech Conduit® Gateway & IP67 Base Station
In response to the global components shortgae, MultiTech has substituted some components for the MultiTech Conduit® Gateways (MTCDT Series) and the IP67 Base Station. In addition to this, an updated version of the mPower Edge™ Intelligence Software will be required on some devices.
What does this mean for you?
Starting in January 2022 (February 2022 for IP67 Base Stations) MultiTech will ship select MTCDT & MTCDTIP devices with substitute components.
Going forward, the MultiTech Conduit® Gateways will no longer be compatible with USB cables. An alternate programming cable will be available from Alliot.
Select devices shipped from January 2022 will require a software update to the latest version of the mPower embedded software and will not be compatible with older firmware versions. New gateways will no longer allow firmware to be downgraded.
The sensor data received on the Kerlink Wanesy Management Centre doesn’t have to be stored only there. It is possible to integrate various dashboards or other cloud servers such as Microsoft Azure with Wanesy by setting up the HTTP push.
In this blog post, I will guide you through the steps you need to take to integrate Kerlink’s Wanesy Management Centre with Microsoft Azure.
There are various Pricing Plans to choose from. Some features may be limited in the free variant. The account, however, is free to create and features are paid on a pay-as-you-use basis.
Once the account is created, we will need to use the IoT Central Application and the IoT Hub platform. The IoT Central Application can display data on the dashboard as well as integrate the device templates. The IoT Hub platform is used to adapt the WMC push to Azure.
Setting up the Azure IoT Central Application
In the search bar type ‘IoT Central Applications’ and hit search. You could also click on the icon if shown on the main page.
Then click on the Create button and fill in the boxes as in the picture below.
If the Resource group tab is empty, click Create new and type in a new name.
At this stage the URL is chosen, by default, it is the name of theresource .azureiotcentral.com but you can adjust it accordingly.
Once all the information is inserted, click on the Create button and give it a few minutes to deploy your application.
When you have a “Your deployment is complete” message, you can move forward to the next step.
Connecting Your Devices
Go to your IoT Central Application– the quickest way is to go to the URL chosen in the previous step. In my example that will be kerlink-demo.azureiotcentral.com
Once you are in your dashboard, go to the Administration section and go to ‘Device Connection’. Find and copy Scope ID. Go to the IoT devices group type and copy the Primary Key. Save it in a text file as it will be required at a later stage.
Choose ‘Kerlink Resource Group’ and paste the Scope ID here as well as the Primary Key. Paste the Primary Key in the “IoT Central SAS Key” box.
Click Next: Review + create. Review the options and click Create.
Wait a minute until the Deployment is done and when you have the message saying “Your deployment is complete” you can move on to the next steps.
Adding Your Devices to Kerlink WMC
Now is a great time for you to add your devices to the Wanesy Management Center. You can skip this step if you have devices already added. Just remember to create a new push configuration later and assign it to the existing cluster.
First of all, login to WMC, go to the Administration section, then select Clusters. In the bottom right corner click the plus icon and create a new cluster. A pop up window till open, in here you will need to give it a name and disable Push configuration. (later on, once we have the push configuration made, we will need to enable this).
Click Validate. Once you have done this, go to the Administration section and ‘End Devices’ tab. Click on the plus icon in the bottom right and fill in all the information. Follow instructions until you can click Validate. When you click Validate the device will be added to the WMC.
Setting up the Push URL
Go back to Microsoft Azure and go toIoT Central applications, click on the Kerlink resource group and click on the function app which has a thunder icon.
Once that is open, go to the Functions section on the left-hand side menu and click on Functions. Click on the function that triggers the HTTP event and select the Code + Test tab. Give it a minute to load and from the tabs on the top of the screen select Get function URL.
In the pop-up window leave the key as default and copy the URL.
Now go to Kerlink Wanesy and click on the Administration section and Clusters tab. On top of the screen select Push Configurations and then click the plus icon in the bottom right.
In the pop-up window, type the name, select HTTP type and Payload message detail level. Click next.
On the next screen paste the URL from Azure. You need to cut the URL from its end up to the question mark symbol (including the ?). You will then need to pastethis into the Data Up route box.
This is my example link from Azure: https://iotc-fnp7rbonitg2tyg.azurewebsites.net/api/IoTCIntegration?code=gykWSte3vai5YEaECLlm5PGuMm0fb7RWE9I10m6TLFqTWxVhmfVJCQ==
In the URL box should be this part: https://iotc-fnp7rbonitg2tyg.azurewebsites.net/api/IoTCIntegration
And in the Data Up route the rest, that is: ?code=gykWSte3vai5YEaECLlm5PGuMm0fb7RWE9I10m6TLFqTWxVhmfVJCQ==
Then click Next, don’t choose any SSLs, click Next again, and click Validate without creating any custom headers.
Now go to the Clusters tab on the top of the screen. Find the cluster you have created previously (or find the cluster that you have the sensors in) and click on the pencil icon next to it to edit.
In the pop-up window under the ‘Push’ section, click Enable and from the drop-down list select the Push configuration that you’ve just created. Press Validate.
Once that is done, uplink messages will start being pushed to Azure from the next time the sensor sends the uplink.
Creating the Device and Device Template on Azure
In MS Azure go to your IoT Central Application. The easiest way to get there is to go via the URL created at the beginning – the name of the resource .azureiotcentral.com In my case it is kerlink-demo.azureiotcentral.com.
You can start with creating a device. Click on Devices and then New. Type the name and Device ID. You can use any name and any ID, for demo purposes I’ve selected the name of the sensor as the name and its DevEui as the ID. You can leave the Template as unassigned at this stage. Then click Create.
Once you create a device, it will have a “registered” status. After it starts sending data, the status will change from “registered” to “provisioned”.
You can then go into the device screen and in the Raw data screen, you should see uplink messages. Go to the Manage template tab at the top of the screen and select the Auto-create template option. Then click on Create template button.
Once you go back to the devices tab and click the row with a message, you will see more detailed pieces of information for each message.
It is worth mentioning here, the number of messages you can see on Azure depends on the plan you’ve selected earlier. Free plans limit the number of messages quite drastically. If you exceed the number of messages they will just stop appearing in the Azure.
If you have a device sending the uplink every few minutes, you will most likely exceed the limit in no time.
“How To” video
To summarise this article up to this point you can watch the above video.
Further steps to use the decoder and fully decode the data will be researched soon. The way to do it is by creating the IoT Hub in Azure and registering the device there along with linking the decoder to it. The further steps of how to do it are currently under development.
To speak with a member of our team about integrating Kerlink Wanesy with your chosen cloud server call us on 01484 599544 or contact us.
Discover IoT for Building Management with Alliot Technologies and Wattsense in our short 30 minute webinar. Throughout the webinar, we’ll introduce you to the future of Smart Buildings and how you too can improve your building management with Wattsense.
We’re delighted to invite you to our live webcast on Tuesday 8th February at 11 am when our Sales Director, Craig Herrett and Wattsense’s Account Manager, Romain Philipon will be hosting a live demo, inveiling the key to the future of Smart Buildings.
Throughout this interactive session, Craig and Romain will be covering the various use cases of the Hub and Box devices. Along with resolving the potential pain points, differentiating between the two products and a live Q&A session.
As we creep closer towards the festive season, we’d like to share more details about our opening and shipping times over Christmas and the New Year. During this period, we will continue to ship orders via APC.
Monday 27th December
Tuesday 28th December
Wednesday 29th December
Thursday 30th December
New Year’s Eve
Monday 3rd January
Tuesday 4th Jan
Open as Usual
Please be aware, we will be running with a reduced number of staff between Christmas and New Year which may increase wait times.
Avoid delays; orders placed on 23rd December will be attempted on the 24th, but are not guaranteed unless booked on a pre 12:00 service. Any orders not delivered on the 24th December will be re-attempted on 4th January unless specified otherwise.
Orders Placed on 29th or 30th December will be attempted to be delivered the same week.
APC Cut off
24th* December/4th January
*To ensure your order arrives by Christmas Eve, we recommend selecting a pre 12:00 guaranteed service. For orders which fail to be delivered on 24th December, please specify if you would like APC to re-attempt delivery between Christmas and New Year. Orders not specified will be delivered on 4th January.
No deliveries will be made to addresses in Scotland on 1st or 4th January due to public bank holiday.
The following services will not be available over the Christmas period:
APC Pre 9:00 and Pre 10:00
DPD Pre 10:30 and Pre 12:00
All Royal Mail Services
For customers wishing to book with DPD, please be aware that the last collection date before Christmas will be the 23rd December. Orders collected on this date will be delivered on the 29th December, the next available collection date after this will be 4th January.
Please note: Throughout the Christmas period, we will be operating a ‘best endeavour’ service, therefore collection and delivery times may vary. If it is important that your orders are received on a specific day we would recommend considering selecting a pre 12:00 service with APC – please contact a member of our team to discuss your requirements.
The sunlight is a great source of power, and it can be used to charge various kinds of batteries. Parametric offers a solution that uses solar panels to charge batteries in their People and Traffic Counters. However, while the solution works great, it is important to remember that the choice of the IoT Solar panel in the right size matters.
The main criterium that determines if the solar solution will even be possible is the place of use. Additionally, things like fog, dust and even cloudy weather may affect the performance of the IoT solar panel system.
Parametric has in their portfolio a wide range of products suitable for various use cases. They have a range of solar panels with integrated charges and batteries for solar panels from 5V up to 20V.
As mentioned before, it is critical to properly select the correct solar solution. This article may help with that choice a little.
PVGIS – Photovoltaic Geographical Information System
The PVGIS is a great tool that can be used for the simulation of the solar power system. It uses meteorological data at the desired location. This is a free online tool and can be accessed at the link below.
The first step for the simulation is to type the address or select the desired place by clicking on the map. Once the place is selected, you need to enter the technical data of the solar panel.
Go to the Off-Grid tab and type the correct details of the solar system. For example, parametric offers the 17W solar panel with a 40° mounting bracket. In this case, settings should look like this:
Parameters and values
Once all values are entered, it is time to run the simulation. Click on the Visualise results button.
The most important output from the simulation is thePercentage days with empty battery.
In this example, at the chosen location, the value is 1.8%.
If the value is 0, there is a very good chance the solar powered system will work in the desired place. If it is not, like in this case, a more powerful system should be chosen.
To simulate if the solution would work with the bigger IoT solar panel in this location, we need to go back to the table with details of the solar system and change the Peak power to a higher value. Let’s try a 60W panel instead of 17W.
And simulate the results again…
Now, the value of percentage days with an empty battery is 0, which means the 60W solar system should work fine for this location.
The PVGIS simulation is based on a meteorological data model (PVGIS-NSRDB solar radiation database). There can always be unpredictable weather situations where too little solar energy is stored and the system will switch off. Alliot nor Parametric can be responsible for any miscalculations or mis-purchases that may result from using this tool.
Contact us today for assistance in assessing your IoT Solar Panel requirements or to discuss your IoT projects in more detail.
We’re partnering with BrighterBins to demonstrate the benefits of IoT and waste management at the RWM Resource Revoloution show later this week. Taking place at the NEC, Birmingham on 22nd and 23rd September, we’ve summarised what you can expect from the show.
What is the RWM Resource Revolution, and why should I attend?
The RWM Resource Revolution is the UK’s largest recycling, resource and waste management event. Featuring over 100 expert speakers and over 500 exhibitors, the show brings together experts from the waste management, resource and recycling industries.
Sustainability is a hot topic right now, and many companies and organisations are looking for ways to reduce their carbon footprint. The RWM event provides a platform for the latest technologies, practices and innovations, making it a great place to learn more about the latest topics, trends and solutions in the industry.
As the UK’s sole distributor for BrighterBins, we will be partnering with them on stand 5-U160 at the RWM Resource Revolution show. With their innovative waste management solution, BrighterBins join together IoT and waste management to provide a truly unique, smart solution. The simple to install device operates by a wireless LoRaWAN® network, and is designed to optimise your waste collections. Adaptable to suit a wide range of bins, the BrighterBins waste management solution can be used to:
Prevent overflowing bins, helping to keep towns and cities clean
Optimise collection routes
Reduce CO2 emissions
With a battery life of up to 8 years (dependent on transmission rates) the BrighterBins smart waste solution is open-API compatible, enabling you to integrate it with any third-party platform.
IoT offers some huge benefits when it comes to optimising your operational efficiencies. To arrange a meeting with us at the show or to find out more about improving your sustainability with IoT get in touch with our expert team.
Our experts are on hand to help you every step of the way Lets talk
Discounted Trade Pricing: Contact us for high volume or trade pricing, to place an order or to discuss your IoT projects with our experts. Dismiss