How to Make a Wireless Sensor Live for a Year on One Tiny Coin Cell Battery

When it Comes to Lifetime, Responsiveness is More Important than Data Rate

Power consumption literally is matter a life and death for battery-powered devices. Making devices last for a long time will reduce deployment costs. And being able to predict the lifetime in advance makes planning easier and allow us to replace batteries at scheduled intervals.

Today we will use the Thingsquare system to make a wireless TI Sensortag live for a year on one coin cell battery.

We see that making the right choices in software can make a stunning 400x difference in power consumption – two orders of magnitude – even with an already extremely power-efficient hardware.

We use the Thingsquare system’s built-in power consumption monitoring mechanism that allow us to predict the lifetime of a device without having to run it until the battery depletes – which would take us at least a year.

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What if something happens to your connected product, in the field? How do you get someone out there to take a look at it?

Today we are announcing our solution to the problem of how to get a person in place when something happens. Thingsquare partner Skyresponse provides an automated system that is able to get a response team in place when something happens with your Thingsquare-powered product.

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We have launched our new documentation site with in-depth technical information about the Thingsquare system and the Thingsquare firmware SDK!

To make it quick and easy to find the right nuggets of information, the site is fully searcheable through its search bar.

Go check it out!

Unlike all other radio communication chips in the world, the new CC1350 chip from Texas Instruments is able to communicate both with a very long range (so-called sub-GHz meshing) and with nearby smartphones (with Bluetooth beacons).

We at Thingsquare are really excited about this new chip because it makes it possible to do hardware designs with a single chip, yet allow smartphones to find nearby devices while having a long range wireless network. And all this while having a really long battery lifetime – at least that’s what the chip’s specifications promise.

We did a power characterization of the TI CC1350 when running the Thingsquare system. The results are in the powerpoint deck below. This is hard-core tech stuff, so be prepared.

And as always, get in touch with us if you are interested in trying this out yourself!

We are excited to announce the availability of a our IoT Sensortag starter kit, in collaboration with Texas Instruments and Weptech!

This is the world’s first IoT system that combines remote connectivity through IPv6 meshing with proximity detection via Bluetooth beacons.

“The Thingsquare system really shows the benefits of the dual-radio approach taken by the Sensortag hardware.

Thingsquare’s combination of a low-power 6lowpan mesh network with Bluetooth beacons is unique in the market.”
Jarle Boe, development kit manager at Texas Instruments and founder of the Sensortag platform

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Stockholm, Sweden

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