We now have come to the second part of our hardware spotlight series! Today we’re taking a look at the Weptech Ethernet gateway.
The Weptech Gateway
The Weptech gateway is a ready-to-use gateway solution for Thingsquare-based systems.
In a Thingsquare system, the gateway is responsible for two things:
- connecting wireless devices into a self-healing mesh network, and
- providing secure remote access to the wireless devices.
The mesh structure is maintained by keeping the network keys, to make sure only the right devices have access, to provide a channel hopping schedule, to avoid interfering with other networks, and to invite new devices.
Secure remote access is provided by connecting an Ethernet cable between gateway and an Internet connection point, like a WiFi router. The gateway acts just like that WiFi router, for the mesh devices.
A Low-Cost, Low-Complexity Design
Unlike many existing gateways, the Weptech gateway is very simple and low-cost. It does not require the use of a “full computer” operating system such as Linux, significantly reducing the complexity, cost, and risk for bugs. Instead, the gateway runs the gateway version of the Thingsquare firmware.
Operating With a Smartphone
Adding devices to a gateway’s network is done via a smartphone app. In the video above, we use the Thingsquare Device Viewer app. For the finished product, this functionality is typically integrated into a customer-specific app. One recent example is the app used by the Lucid Wireless System, which includes this functionality.
Powered by USB
The Weptech gateway connects to the Internet with an Ethernet cable and to power with a USB cable.
The Weptech gateway is powered via its built-in USB port, making it easy to connect to power anywhere in the world.
Using a USB port for power makes it possible to use any USB charger to connect the gateway to power, making the Weptech gateway immediately useful with any electrical plug standard.
The Weptech gateway has two built-in radios: one radio for the 2.4 GHz band and one sub-GHz band radio. The 2.4 GHz radio is intended for in-door use, such as in homes, whereas the sub-GHz radio is good for out-door networks and in-door networks that need a longer range.
Switching between the radios is done via a standard firmware update.
Ready to be Integrated
The Weptech gateway is readily available as a circuit board, ready to be integrated.
The Weptech gateway is available as a circuit board and is ready to be integrated into your product. The board is put in a separate box and is sold as part of the solution.
For prototyping, the Weptech gateway can be purchased through RS Electronics
|2.4 GHz System-on-a-Chip microcontroller||Texas Instruments CC2538|
|Sub-GHz radio transceiver||Texas Instruments CC1200|
|Ethernet controller||Microchip ENC28j60|
|Wireless protocol||IEEE 802.15.4 / 6lowpan|