These days we hear a lot of noise about IoT, the Internet of Things. But what is this IoT, and how does it work? You can find answers to all these questions in this article.
The internet of things establishes communication between interrelated computing mechanical devices that can transfer data. Simply, IoT is the concept of connecting any device (as long as it has an ON/OFF switch) with the internet or to other connected devices.
Let us consider an example. Imagine you leave your office with your lamps on. It will unnecessarily consume power until you return. In this case, if
the lights are an IoT device, then a simple command from the user can trigger the software and control the actions of the lamp without much effort. You can switch off, schedule the period for dimming the lamps, etc., without much effort.
The working of IoT is different for different IoT echo systems/ architectures. However, the key concepts of working are similar. The entire working process of IoT starts with the device themselves (eg. smartphones, digital watches, electronic appliances), which securely communicate with the IoT platform.
The platforms collect and analyse the data from all devices and platforms and transfer the data with applications to devices.
The list of types of IoT Devices are continuously growing day by day.
These are some common types of IoT devices:
Some of the main features are:
makes things smarter and enhances life through the use of data
It is suitable for systems with many nodes on the same network. This type of connection found in industrial and building automation. Ethernet is one of the fastest and most reliable ways to connect things with internet
Most mainstream devices support this method and do not have the hard-wiring constraints of Ethernet. The main attractive points of WiFi are, it is wireless and fast. However, security vulnerabilities and power consumption are the main challenges of this method.
LPWAN is commonly used for wide-area applications like environmental monitoring, monitoring inaccessible areas, agriculture etc. since these
networks can cover large area with very little power.
Even though cellular coverage is all over the world, this method is expensive. We must use a provider, and we need governmental regulatory approval for setting up our networks. The cost of the embedded components and provider subscriptions restricts cellular networks’ extensive reach.
Satellite connectivity is for remote regions without cellular coverage.
Bluetooth is one of the most commonly used connectivity methods because it is widely supported, low in power and easy to pair, Unlike Wi-Fi, Bluetooth does not directly connect to the Internet. We need to set up a gateway to connect to the internet.
Commonly used networks, such as Wi–Fi and Bluetooth, are the easiest way to evaluate and explore IoT designs. These networks do not require you to build your own gateway or pay for a provider. Several Wi-Fi and Bluetooth prototyping modules are available to consumers with open source code and tutorials. Let us check out whether Wi-Fi or Bluetooth is more suitable for IoT development.
Let us check some important factors to make a choice between BLE and
Both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi offer good levels of user security. Before there were issues with Bluetooth where a third-party device can listen the data transfer between two devices. AES-CCF Cryptography(encrypting the data)
fixed this issue. Wi-Fi uses 256-bit encryption whereas bluetooth offers 128-bit encryption. Both are the usual level of security that user needed. However, if you want a higher level of security then you can go for Wi-Fi.
Bluetooth is suitable for transferring small chunks of data (such as values from IoT sensors) at 1Mbps. Bluetooth is not suited for sending data in real-time to a server. For that, we need a special gateway for sending data.
Wi-Fi is the ideal type for sending large files and data (such as videos). IT can transmit data up to 1.3Gbps speed. The speed of Wi-Fi may vary based on different factors (such as subscribed providers). However, Bluetooth is very much slower than Wi-Fi Direct.
Bluetooth offers more privacy than Wi-Fi.
Both Wi-Fi and Bluetooth can provide accurate location information, although Bluetooth may be somewhat more reliable in certain cases. For eg
micro-locating, Bluetooth is the best option, because Wi-Fi signals are really incompetent for penetrating through solid objects, including walls.
The proximity detection provided by Bluetooth is much more accurate than Wi-Fi. By measuring the access points in a device, Wi-Fi correctly points to the exact location (SSID and MAC address used).. However, Bluetooth is all about proximity, not about the correct location.
Bluetooth is smaller in range than Wi-Fi. The long range Bluetooth modules provide a range of up to around 1,500 feet. Bluetooth uses mesh networking, So we can transmit over a large range with less power. Even though the range of Bluetooth will depend on the obstacles and the density of the walls in between two devices. Bluetooth will not be the best choice for all IoT devices /scenario.
If the device needs to exchange a substantial amount of data, Bluetooth will not be able to accomplish this. For transmitting large images, Wi-Fi is the answer. Wi-Fi range also varies depending on some factors such as frequency, transmission power, antenna type, and environment, etc. Wi-Fi
routers located outdoors have a much larger range.
Bluetooth devices have lower power consumption than Wi-Fi devices.
Bluetooth is less costly, self-sufficient, and extra configuration is not needed. We need to configure the Wi-Fi routers and should connect to a power source. The expense of Wi-Fi depends on the router used and the manufacturer.
There is no clear winner when it comes to Bluetooth v/s Wi-Fi. Both can have their own pros and cons. In general, Bluetooth is better for mobile devices that have limited power requirements, and is suitable for transferring small chunks of data . However, Wi-Fi is better for larger data transfer that needs a direct connection to the Internet.
Are you planning to develop an IoT app? At Logidots, we have developed multiple IoT solutions ranging from enterprise smart device solutions to robotic toy apps that can be controlled through mobile apps. If you would like to discuss your IoT product idea, get in touch with an app expert from Logidots.
Explore our Product Development Services
Build Better Software, Faster.
All rights reserved 2021