IoT Wi-Fi Module: How to Choose the Best?

2021-09-02/ By Admin

Choosing the Best IoT Wi-Fi Module for Your Projects

A number of devices are now using the IoT or Internet of Things for their connection. Moreover, this number keeps on increasing every year. However, IoT Wi-Fi adoption depends upon a number of factors.  So, if you want to deploy your own IoT project, it is extremely important to determine which IoT Wi-Fi module is the best for you.

So, this is what we are going to discuss here. By going through the important factors, you will be able to make an effective choice for your needs. So, let’s get started!

IoT Wi-Fi module

What is the IoT?

Before we discuss the IoT Wi-Fi module, let’s first talk a bit about the IoT. It will help you have a deeper understanding of its Wi-Fi modules.

Also known as the Internet of Things, IoT includes a billion physical devices all over the world that are connected to the internet and share and collect data with each other. The collecting and sharing of data are possible because of the arrival of extremely cheap computer chips and the invention of the wireless network. Due to this invention, it is now possible to turn anything into a part of the IoT. Thus, you can conveniently turn something small such as a pill into something big such as an airplane into an IoT.

However, connecting all these devices to the IoT requires a level of intelligence that enables the device to communicate real-time data without the helping hand of a human being. Without this technology, the devices would have been really dumb.

Therefore, it will not be wrong to say that the Internet of Things or IoT plays a significant role in making the world around us more responsive and smarter. Not only this, but it also helps in merging the digital and physical universes.

What is an example of the IoT?

To understand the IoT Wi-Fi module in detail, we have come up with an example of IoT devices for you.

Nowadays, you can pretty much transform any device into an IoT device and connect it to the internet. Not only this, but you can also communicate or collect information through them.

Let’s take an example of a lightbulb here. You can now switch on the bulb using a smartphone app. This is a great example of an IoT device and so is a smart thermostat that you use in the office or a motion sensor that you connect to the streetlight.

Moreover, the IoT device can be as minimal as a toy for children or as massive as a driverless truck. You can even fill some larger objects with many smaller components of IoT. An example of this includes a jet engine that you can fill with a thousand sensors for the collection and transmission of data to ensure that it operates efficiently.

On a bigger scale, smart cities projects nowadays are filling the whole region with different sensors. These sensors help them in understanding and controlling the environment.

A Brief History of the IoT

The entire idea of adding intelligence and sensors to the objects was evaluated during the 1980s and 1990s. While there are some earlier ancestors of the IoT as well, their progress was entirely slow and simple because the technology at that time was not ready. That’s because chips at that time were bulky and big and as a result, the objects couldn't communicate efficiently with each other.

The IoT was at first generally fascinating to business and assembling, where its application is in some cases known as machine-to-machine (M2M), however, the accentuation is currently on filling our homes and workplaces with savvy gadgets, changing it into something pertinent to nearly everybody. Early ideas for web associated gadgets included 'blogjects' (objects that blog and record information about themselves to the web), omnipresent figuring (or 'ubicomp'), imperceptible processing, and unavoidable registering. Notwithstanding, it was the Web of Things and IoT that stuck.

How Big is the IoT?

The Internet of Things is significantly big and is getting bigger with each passing day. In fact, it would not be wrong to say that IoT devices are more connected things in the world as compared to the people out there.

An analyst company predicts that there will be a total of 41.6 billion IoT devices by the end of the year 2025. Moreover, it also states that the automotive and industrial equipment will represent the largest parts of the IoT devices. However, there will be a strong adoption of these devices in smart homes in the near future.

Another analyst company predicts that the endeavor and car areas will represent 5.8 billion gadgets this year, up very nearly a quarter in 2019. Utilities will be the most noteworthy client of IoT, because of the proceeding rollout of brilliant meters. Security gadgets, as gatecrasher identification and web cameras, will be the second greatest utilization of IoT gadgets. Building robotization – like associated lighting – will be the quickest developing area, trailed via auto (associated vehicles) and medical services (checking of persistent conditions).

What is an IoT Wi-Fi Module?

Given its important role in supplying high-throughput data transfer for both home environments and enterprises, we don’t think there is a need to explain an IoT Wi-Fi module. It is a type of IoT module that helps the devices connect over the Wi-Fi network. However, when you talk about the IoT space, it is a bit limited in coverage, power consumption, and scalability.

Forcing high energy necessities, Wi-Fi is regularly not a plausible answer for enormous organizations of battery-worked IoT sensors, particularly in mechanical IoT and keen structure situations. All things considered, it more relates to associating gadgets that can be helpfully associated with an electrical plug like brilliant home contraptions and apparatuses, computerized signage, or surveillance cameras.

Wi-Fi 6 – the most current Wi-Fi age – gets incredibly improved organization transfer speed (for example <9.6 Gbps) to further develop information throughput per client in blocked conditions. With this, the standard is ready to step up the open Wi-Fi framework and change client experience with new advanced portable administrations in the retail and mass diversion areas. Likewise, in-vehicle networks for infotainment and installed diagnostics are relied upon to be the most game-changing use case for Wi-Fi 6. However, the advancement will probably take some additional time.

What are the Benefits of Using the IoT Wi-Fi Module?

You can avail a number of advantages that you can avail by using the IoT Wi-Fi module. You can simplify your entire connectivity design with the help of this process. That’s because it is extremely easy to fit a Wi-Fi chip to your device that was not pre-installed on the module. As a result, you can now experience a formidable improvement in building a custom implementation that is mostly outside the scope for even the most embedded device manufacturers.

In addition to this, the manufacturers calibrate and test these modules on regular basis. Not only this, but they get the certification from the relevant regulatory bodies such as FCC as well. This is what enables them to offer a plug-and-play solution to the users. Not only this, th drastically reduce the need for custom hardware development. As a result, they become an incredibly fast and go-to-market solution for the users.

How to Choose the Best IoT Wi-Fi Module for You?

There are various parameters that you need to consider before choosing the best IoT Wi-Fi module for your needs. These parameters include data rate, RF band, certification, range, etc. Let’s take a look at some of the most important factors that you should take into account. These factors will help you choose the best module for your project.

1.      IoT Architecture

One of the most important factors to consider is whether you should go for a single or a “host processor + Wi-Fi module solution”.

A single solution is a solution where you run the host application and Wi-Fi stack on one single chip. This is an ideal configuration for embedded devices where your main priority is the physical layout size. That’s because it will eliminate multiple external components that are integrated together. Since you can share the components in the wireless MCU configuration, you will need to use fewer components. This will help you in simplifying PCB routing and layout considerations.

On the other hand, a “host processor + Wi-Fi module solution” is the solution where the wireless connectivity solution includes a Wi-Fi stack and a separate processor to run the host application. This architecture is ideal for users that are looking for a well-defined and fully matured Wi-Fi technology. Moreover, it does not change frequently. As a result, you get minimal Wi-Fi overhead on the MCU. Not only this, but you can also simplify the code development effort since you can easily rely upon the packaged Wi-Fi stacks.

2.      Wi-Fi Protocol Support

The IEEE 802.11 addresses the group of remote LAN principles. These principles work for the most part in the unlicensed recurrence groups. Today, there are numerous principles such as 802.11 a/b/g/j/n/p/ac/advertisement/ah that people use, and every standard has distinctive determination necessities.

There are three vital components to compromise while choosing these conventions: information rate, reach and force prerequisites. Conventions like 802.11n, 802.11ac, and 802.11ah enjoy the benefit of a higher information rate for IoT mixed media applications.

On the other hand, conventions like 802.11b/g enjoy the benefit of power necessities. According to the experts, the best IoT Wi-Fi module for you relies upon the requests and employments of your IoT application.

3.      A Secure Wi-Fi Support

The security of the data transmitted over the internet is one of the major challenges that people have to face. So, before you allow the IoT devices to connect to the internet, you need to ensure that it has the necessary Wi-Fi support that it requires for security standards.

The best Wi-Fi modules support at least one of the many Wi-Fi security standards such as WPA, WPA3, or others. Each of these security standards has its own advantages and disadvantages. So, you must make sure that select the one that best fits your needs.

4.      Operating Frequency

Another important factor to consider is the operating speed of the IoT module. The IEEE 802.11 module operates in different frequency ranges. Therefore, it is extremely important to choose the one that is suitable for you. Moreover, all of these frequencies are divided into a multitude of channels as well.

Different countries have their different set of rules and regulations when it comes to determining the allowable channels and power levels. These regulations are important to use within the frequency bands. Nowadays, many Wi-Fi modules come up with dual-band support in both 5GHz and 2.4GHz that provide flexibility in how to deploy and manage mobile IoT devices.

5.      Hardware Interfaces

Normally, Wi-Fi modules are packaged with numerous I/operating systems and fringe interface backing to suit various necessities. The USB, SPI, or SDIO interfaces are liked to help high information throughput applications. Something else, the common interface is through a UART, I2C, I2S, and others.

6.      Certification

Different countries have their own administrative certificates and for IoT devices. If you want to enter those business sectors, they need to consent to those guidelines. Subsequently, for business applications, select Wi-Fi modules that have RF-affirmed safeguarding, for example, by the FCC.

Some Other Types of IoT Modules

Apart from the IoT Wi-Fi module, there are some other types of IoT modules as well. Let’s check them out below.

  • LPWANs
  • Cellular (3G/4G/5G)
  • Zigbee and Other Mesh Protocols
  • Bluetooth and BLE
  • RFID
IoT Wi-Fi module

Final Words

An IoT Wi-Fi module can benefit your business in several different ways. However, if you want to take advantage of this technology, you must ensure that you pick the right one for your needs. We hope the above guide will help you in determining how to pick the best Wi-Fi module for your different projects and businesses. However, if you still have any questions, feel free to contact us. We will be happy to assist you in any way we can!