LoRaWAN. Its a magical network that uses unlicensed spectrum (915MHz for me), runs longish distances with stupidly low power (years of battery life), and is designed to make your things network in internet-styles. And now its in my house.
At right we see a Dragino gateway. Who is Dragino you ask? Well, in their own words: “Dragino dedicates to promote Open Source IoT solution. Our Open Source products are sold world widely and gain good names in the Open Source Internet of Things filed.” I think that is pretty clear! They make a gateway (and you don’t necessarily need a gateway in LoRa) that runs OpenWRT. And they have a YouTube video with real production values (see end).
Coupled with that I have a pair of ESP32 LoRa micro, powered up, and happily chatting. That was easy!
OK, digging in a bit, this is a single-channel device, it seems it is more of a node than a gateway. Hmm. But, well, the company has done a decent job here, documentation on connecting to The Things Network, on using it with open source, on compiling for it. Its not common for Shenzen-express-type products to have anything other than the box they came in. So kudos for that. Even the ESP32 MCU’s came w/ a github repo (and a web site, a lot of electronics that arrive at my house don’t have that nicety or even a brand name). Times they are a changing!
The interior? Sure. Click the thumbnails to see the glorious detail.