We are working towards releasing the Beta version of our middleware Pybytes, to the first 100 customers who signed up, in late June. We’ll then be working towards a more general release 2 months later.
So what can you expect?
– Pybytes is a platform that allows you to connect all your Pycom devices to an already existing backend that facilitates listing, locating, connecting and using your devices.
– Pybytes consists of several modules designed to help with the most general and specific tasks, making it the perfect tool for both development and production.
– MQTT Broker: Pybytes runs over an open MQTT broker that has connections for internet connection, LoRa (currently TTN Network supported) and Sigfox. Others to follow.
– Pybytes Protocol: Pybytes runs over a simple 5 to 45 bytes protocol that allows you to send different information messages. Implementing this protocol in your projects is optional (although required for some features). We have an existing library in MicroPython that already handles everything for you in all Pycom products
– Storage System: Pybytes stores the messages on an innovative rotational storage system that allows you to decide wether a message is important or not for you; setting it as a permanent or not permanent message. Currently we have a FREE 5 Mb plan that allows you to store thousand of messages before running out of space, and even if you do, the rotational storage will continue saving your messages provided that non important ones can be deleted.
– Dashboard System: A simple to use, generic dashboard with Line Chart, Bar Chart and many other widgets to view and set values from your devices. The perfect companion for development. You even get a terminal to run MicroPython code directly from the web.
– Geolocation: Pybytes can locate your devices doing a simple wifi scan to your device. The system uses Google Geolocation Services and provides an accuracy of approx 20 meters.
– Open for everyone: Pybytes is not a closed backend for Pycom devices only. Creating your own libraries that comply with the Pybytes protocol will allow you to connect any other device to the platform and get the full advantages of the system.
You will recall that unlike many other platforms we will NOT charge any monthly subscriptions or per device fees. There will be 2 sections to our platform, a data and a device management aspect.
Users can build their own dashboard in minutes pulling and visualising data onto the platform. For more sophisticated data reporting there will also be API integration into our platform partners such as MS Azure, AWS, Google etc. YOU choose not us. The API integration will take place after Beta phase release.
Here you will be able to check the firmware version of your device, when it last sent data, how much data was sent, what network it connected to etc, in essence, everything you need to manage your device and the health of your device.
So what about the mapping?
Well as you know, Pycom was one of the Pioneers in pushing multi-network modules all with, as a base standard, WiFi and Bluetooth. Choosing those 2 standards was not done through luck but through a vision that sensors could connect via BLE and WiFi could be / will be used in the future as options for firmware updates, high data transmission (where networks permit). However, you can also use the WiFi for Geolocation purposes as we have discussed above. So no surprise to announce that Pycom has signed a deal with Google making use of their Geolocation API which will help return X,Y coordinates for any assets which does not have GPS. Ideal application for in-city use, an environment ideal for Smart Cities. For out-of-town applications of course, this process is not relevant but then you can use our new Pytrack shields 🙂
Here are some of the screenshots from the platform showing one of our devices reporting back the SSIDs picked up prior to sending the info to the Google servers.
Here is the rendered map with geolocation confirmed:
These services are pay as you use however we are talking a few cents per use as we have put in place a micro-billing platform enabling you to pay per click if that is what you need. Sadly, Google does expect to get paid each time we use the service 😉
There will be more cool features coming to the platform but best to leave that as a surprise (and keep our competition guessing 🙂
The Pycom Team