It becomes more and more popular and common to deploy any kind of product from different industries – consumer products, manufacturing, agriculture, smart city, industrial products with the ability to be connected to the internet, and not just to send data back to the cloud and create a beautiful dashboard with data diagrams.
AWS IoT missed the point of today’s 2020 basic needs of each and every connected IoT product owner or developer:
connected products have to be maintained remotely
While everybody is looking at Kubernetes, serverless and other great infrastructure environments that made it extremely easy to deploy a product app to the cloud and maintain it, looks like there is only one solution which did the same at the IoT – embedded Linux and RTOS domain, and yes, you got the title right – their name is not AWS IoT – Upswift.io
Upswift.io provides a one-stop cloud platform solution for deploying over the air software updates, manage, control and monitor a fleet of IoT devices easily. As it wrote on their website:
Upswift customers manage edge devices in over 35 countries
Upswift solution aims to redefine the meaning of IoT management, as the platform provides the needed tools for maintaining thousands of connected products remotely, even in the case of a possible product recall, Upswift customers able to control their devices and fix the software bug or the issue completely remotely. The ability to manage and control the product remotely even in case of a software issue all thanks to a smart, lightweight Upswift Agent, which responsible for keeping the IoT product connected to the internet and to Upswift platform. Their agent runs separately from the product application which ensures it’s availability through their cloud platform at any given moment.
Connect any Linux or RTOS device at 60 seconds?
Upswift.io claims that it takes less than 60 seconds to connect any kind of Linux or embedded Linux device – Yocto based image, Debian, Ubuntu from any architecture – x86_64, armv6,7,8, 32 and 64 bit. Besides connecting Linux devices raspberry Pi like, you can connect RTOS based embedded devices like Arduino or ESP.
What happened when I tried to connect an Embedded Linux Yocto based device?
After registering to Upswift platform and choosing the free prototyping plan, I clicked on ‘Register Device’ button. The next and the only part I had to do is to run the installation command on the device terminal. Well, now I can understand what is all about..my embedded Linux device suddenly showed up and was ready to be managed.
Using remote management platforms like Upswift.io is the only way I can feel confident with deploying an IoT product fleet to the field.
The real magic starts here. Having the ability to remotely ssh to each of my devices through remote web terminal (which is pretty cool!), send BASH commands to stop my python application or to check things easily, deploy over the air software update took me just a few minutes and not less important, it is possible to monitor the resources of the device and get alerts in accordance.
Going back to AWS IoT
So after understanding what is Upswift.io all about, I decided to look again at AWS IoT and see if I can do the normal stuff I used to do with Upswift platform – remote SSH, deploy OTA updates and even just see the device current state – online/offline.
Well, I found it really hard to just connect my Embedded Linux device to the AWS IoT platform and even harder to find or use it, unfortunately, these basic features and tools don’t really exist there.
The same as cloud servers, managing IoT devices remotely can make the difference between a stable managed product with great software upgrades and support to product experiences non-stop recalls and a lot of customers angry.
In 2020, deploying thousands of connected products or even one, need to be backed up with a good maintenance platform that will keep the product managers and the developers relaxed even when their product running with a software bug in production.