Cisco-backed iOT comms aspirant LoRa ships IoT dev kit

Thing-makers get a bi-directional wireless standard they can all agree on

Three companies backing the LoRa Alliance have joined together to push things along with an Internet of Things development kit.

LoRaWAN is one of a bunch of low-power wireless communications proposals for IoT, in particular targeting the battery-powered sensor applications.

The LoRa Alliance members, silicon developer Semtech, wireless vendor Libelium, and network services outfit Loriot, have pitched into the development kit.

There are two versions of the kit, supporting either the 915 MHz band used in America, or the 868 MHz frequencies used in Europe.

The kit has a gateway, ten Semtech sensor devices, application software, and a connection to the Loriot LoRaWAN cloud networtk.

The idea is to get the developer working without having to pre-test hardware, software, or whether the gateway is connecting to the network.

LoRaWAN envisages a star-of-stars topology: the gateway acts as a transparent bridge to relay messages from devices to a network server.

The spec supports both bidirectional communications with end-points, and multicasts for operations like software upgrades.

It's a low-data-rate spec running from 300 bits/second up to 50 Kbps, with data rate managed by the server to reduce the load on device batteries. A variety of encryption schemes, with keys for the network, the device, and the application, protect data on the network.

The LoRa Alliance recently added Cisco to its member list. ®


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