The global IoT node and gateway market size is estimated to grow from USD 387.1 billion to USD 563.7 billion by 2026.
The growing importance of IoT and smart connected devices has increased the demand for IoT gateway. The ideal gateway should support multiple radio connectivity for sensor devices running low power south bound protocols such as Z-Wave, Zigbee, BLE, Thread, Wirepass, etc. On the other hand, it should also support north bound connectivity over LTE, WiFI, Ethernet with redundancy. The reason being – a single multi-protocol IoT gateway will integrate many devices manufactured by various OEMs for different use cases. That is how a multi-protocol IoT gateway solution solves the issue of integration of multiple vendor-specific devices into a single smart solution. It provides flexibility and interoperability to consumers who expect their devices to be able to communicate seamlessly in ad-hoc environments.
When a Gateway is designed to support multiple protocols, it opens up a range of use cases with a single hardware such as Home automation, Industrial automation, Asset tracking, Connected Healthcare, Agriculture, Smart commercial buildings with smart sanitary, etc. Many of the OEMs face multiple challenges including time to market and high development overheads while designing their gateway prototype.. To avoid these challenges, OEMs might consider selecting a production-ready platform for their gateway requirement to save time and money. CENTAURI-200 is the Enterprise/Industrial IoT gateway which is capable of serving all the above requirements of the OEMs and IoT service provider market.
Let’s see how OEMs can take advantage of a Multi-radio hardware platform for enterprise and industrial applications.
The Benefits of a Multi-radio Hardware Platform for OEMs
The multi-protocol hardware platform enables OEMs to take advantage of the strength of two or more radios running in multiple protocols at the same time. CENTAURI-200 is the enterprise/industrial IoT gateway in which a software framework allows OEMs to quickly build applications and manage things in real-time using gateway management, user management, end device management, OTA management, gateway monitoring, Live logging, history management and real-time notification functionality using the dashboard.
Different Connectivity Support on CENTAURI 200
The CENTAURI-200 gateway supports multi-radio connectivity such as Bluetooth Low Energy(BLE) 5.0 & Thread-enabled IEEE 802.15.4 module (NXP KW41Z), BLE 5.0 Module (Nordic nRF52840), Z-Wave module (Silicon-labs ZM5304/ZGM130S), Zigbee module (JN5179 or Silabs EFR32MG12P, MGM210P), 1x USB with type-A connectivity and High speed CAN bus 2.0 A/B interface for southbound connectivity. It supports LTE Module Quectel EG91 (IoT/M2M Optimized LTE Cat 1)/Quectel BG95 (LTE Cat M1/Cat NB2/EGPRS)/Quectel BG96 (LTE Cat M1/Cat NB1/EGPRS), Ethernet, and Wi-Fi options for northbound connectivity.
This enables OEMs to interact with a variety of end devices over different radios on a single platform and allow seamless data flow between various cloud options. It offers higher operational flexibility with reduced energy consumption when compared with single-radio platforms.
As the CENTAURI-200 firmware supports multi-radio and multi-protocol platforms, the design costs are also reduced as compared to integrating a single radio on a gateway. This simplifies the integration process for OEMs and thereby faster time to market.
Leveraging CENTAURI 200 Software Framework for Different OEM Applications
CENTAURI200 is integrated with IoTify Cloud and Mobile Application. The IoTify is a standalone platform for gateway management, end device management, user management, OTA management with CENTAURI-200 gateway. CENTAURI-200 SDK enables devices to connect, authenticate, and exchange messages with AWS IoT Core using the MQTT, HTTP, or WebSockets protocols.
CENTAURI-200 firmware runs several applications after boot up like gateway manager, device manager, cloud agent service, network handler, rules scene manager, log manager, GPIO manager, LTE connection manager, health-check monitoring agent.
The gateway manager service is developed to support user association/dissociation, OTA of kernel and filesystem, application services and radio controllers, a factory reset of the CENTAURI-200 gateway and its services. The user can associate the gateway with the help of IoTify mobile applications using Wi-Fi or Ethernet. Once the gateway is registered, end users can add/remove end devices using the IoTify mobile application and the same is displayed in the OEM Dashboard.
The device manager application is built for every protocol (Zigbee, Z-Wave, BLE, Thread) as an individual application that is responsible to manage end device pairing/unpairing, control end devices, device status (online/offline, battery status), and end device information(device details).
- Z-Wave: Z-Wave device manager is developed with the support of Silicon labs Z-Ware and Z/IP gateway application which allows you to control and manage the nodes in a Z-Wave network. It allows end-users to pair/unpair, control and manage z-wave supported end devices with the CENTAURI-200 gateway using a mobile application. Any device with Z-Wave certification can be integrated with minimum changes in the Z-wave manager service, which is integrated with the SDK solution.
- BLE: BLE device manager service is developed for BLE Mesh Network to support connectable devices and BLE Non-mesh to support scannable devices, this is integrated with SDK solution. BLueZ stack 5.50 is used on the host side and Zephyr 2.1.0 is used for the BLE controller (Nordic’s nRF52840) for the support of the BLE manager. BLE device manager uses Bluez provided commands (CLI tools) to create HCI raw interface. On the Zephyr side (On nRF52840), HCI application runs that can respond to HCI commands sent from the BLE device manager.
- Zigbee: Zigbee device manager is developed with Zigbee 3.0 SDK version JN-SW-4270. It supports all the commonly known sensors (Door, motion, bulb, thermostat, leak sensor) which can be used with the CENTAURI-200 gateway. For the support of specific sensors, OEM users can implement their business logic with available sensor types using the Zigbee device manager library. If OEM users want to add new sensor types then with the minimum changes in Zigbee device manager and Zigbee control services, sensors can be added and which can be done by the CENTAURI200 support team. Similarly, MGM12P and MGM210P support is added with the Silabs NCP-UART-SW application with EmberZNet PRO stack version 6.5.5 and 6.7.6 respectively.
- Thread: CENTAURI-200 SDK runs a thread device manager application that is developed with the available NXP Thread stack for connecting the devices used for home automation in the IoTify Platform.
How CENTAURI-200 Platform Services Provides Strategic Advantage to OEM Customers
Cloud agent service helps communication from the gateway to the cloud and sends it to other services over message queues. Similarly, other applications running on the gateway send messages to a cloud agent to communicate with the cloud.
Rules and scene manager service handles the rules and scenes created in the mobile application with the trigger and controllable devices. The user can create/update/delete rules and scenes from the mobile application for the registered gateway.
Log manager provides different types of logging functionality. It also provides functionality to support live logging which is sent to the AWS cloud according to the user requirement.
GPIO manager manages any application that wants to control the onboard LEDs. It can program the LED-based on the input received from other applications.
LTE connection manager connects CENTAURI-200 gateway to a cellular network. The connection manager also sends the GPS location of the devices using MQTT messages to the cloud.
Health-check monitoring agent monitors critical parameters of the gateway that can impact field operations such as CPU Usage, RAM Usage, Storage utilization, CPU temperature. If any of the parameter values reaches beyond the defined threshold value, the gateway sends the notification to the cloud on MQTT Topic.
How CENTAURI-200 Gateway Help OEMs with Different Applications
Healthcare Solution with Home Automation
Healthcare devices like Pulse Oximeter, Thermometer, blood pressure monitor can be enabled using BLE and home automation devices like a door, motion, and bulb can be controlled with Z-Wave/ Zigbee protocols with the IoTify Platform. This solution enables the elderly to stay at home in difficult situations.
Wearable Devices with Home Automation
Wearable devices like smartwatches, smartphones, beacons can be connected to CENTAURI-200 for multiple uses with a smart lock, leak sensor and other sensors can be paired with Z-wave/Zigbee/Thread using CENTAURI-200 gateway.
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