Microsoft Azure IoT, Balena, Particle, or Toit – Choosing the Right IoT Development Platform

IoT Development Platforms

With the ongoing fourth Industrial Revolution (Industry 4.0), IoT technologies are playing a major role in automating industrial processes. Integrating existing systems with IoT results in an intelligent solution that focuses more on providing better adaptability and resource efficiency. If you start building such systems from scratch while ensuring reliability and other factors, it will surely take a lot of research and time. This is where an IoT development platform steps in to save your time and makes things a lot easier. The main idea behind these platforms is to avoid reinventing the wheel and to provide standardized functions and features, so you don’t waste your time implementing something that someone has already done for you. You can collect data, control and manage apps and connect to their cloud services for better machine-to-machine communication. This article will look at some modern IoT development platforms and finally compare them to help […]

Balena EtcherPro multi SD card writer now up for pre-order

Buy Balena Etcher Pro

We first wrote about Balena EtcherPro in December 2018, as a relatively low-cost multi-SD card writer, designed by Balena for people who needed to flash several micro SD cards, USB drives, or boards. At the time, mass production was scheduled for Q2 2019. But it took a bit more time than expected, and the company is only now taking pre-orders for the device with a $50 deposit, and $990 price tag excluding VAT and shipping. EtcherPro highlights and specifications: Display – 7-inch RGB touch screen for control Ports – 16x USB 3.0, 16x SD card slots, 16x MicroSD card slots to flash up to 16 drives/devices at once Flash at speeds up to 52MB/s when flashing 16 drives/devices simultaneously, or up to 200MB/s for a single drive/device Supports SD, microSD, USB drives, and single-board computers (or compute modules via carrier boards) Flash an image from a physical drive source or […]

Giveaway Week Winners – November 2019

giveaway week 2019

We just had another of our yearly “Giveaway week” on CNX Software with 7 prizes including Arm and RISC-V development boards, NB-IoT tracker, USB-C hub, as well as development kits based on ESP32 or ESP8266 WiSoCs. People just had to comment within a 48 hours period, and we would randomly select a winner each day. We now have all confirmed winners with a strong start from Europe, Asia catching up mid-week, before with Poland and Brazil taking the week-end prizes: Balena Fin Developer Kit – Laurent H, FRANCE WisCellular NB-IoT & eMTC GPS Tracker – Jimmy, SWEDEN MINIX NEO S1 USB-C Hub with 120GB built-in SSD – Jeroen, BELGIUM Maixduino Sipeed M1 RISC-V AI Kit – Nguyen Tung, VIETNAM ANAVI Gas Detector Starter Kit – Bumsik Kim, SOUTH KOREA Particle Mesh IoT Development Kit – Wojciech Lubicz-Lapinski, POLAND NanoPi M4V2 SBC & Metal Case Kit – Thiago Tavares, BRAZIL I […]

Giveaway Week – Balena Fin Developer Kit

balenaFin, RPi Compute Module, Power Supply, Enclosure

We’ve been organizing “giveaway weeks” every year since 2014 on CNX Software to send some of the review samples to our readers. Let’s do it again in 2019 starting with Balena Fin developer kit based on Raspberry Pi 3+ Computer Module (CM3+) with 8GB flash and a carrier board in order to get started with BalenaOS operating system and the company’s balenaCloud service. Instead of a traditional review, we wrote a getting started guide for balenaFin Developer Kit, balenaOS and balenaCloud, where we explain how to flash the OS to the board, configure it, run a container, and manage the device, including container updates, from Balenacloud. The winner will receive the full kit below with carrier board, Raspberry Pi CM3+ module, CR1225 battery, enclosure, power supply, and MicroUSB cable. It will come already assembled as shown in the first photo. To enter the draw simply leave a comment below. Other […]

BalenaOS may be the First Fully Functional 64-bit OS for Raspberry Pi 4

Raspberry Pi 4 64-bit OS

BalenaOS 64-Bit OS Balena just announced the release of a 64-bit OS for the Raspberry Pi 4, that latest release of the iconic SBC. BalenaOS is designed to run 32-bit and 64-bit Docker containers side-by-side and simultaneously.  It also supports up to 4GB of memory, to accomplish that feat. The balenaOS also supports several other embedded systems and versions of Raspberry Pi How BalenaOS Is Set Up The BalenaOS is opensource, Yocto Linux-based host OS made for containers. The workflow is fast and current and allows for a number of different embedded systems, but especially Raspberry Pi 4 in a 64-bit environment. The Main Advantage With the advances in the Raspberry Pi 4 platform, the faster data throughput, improved graphics handling, and the faster processor speeds, the BalenaOS is taking full advantage of the Raspberry Pi 4.  It adds a wide variety of possibilities to a platform that was waiting […]

Getting Started with balenaFin Developer Kit, balenaOS and balenaCloud

balenaFIN USB programming

balena Fin is a carrier board for Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3/3+ designed specifically for industrial applications leveraging fleet management services provided by Balena. I received balenaFin developer kit last month, and in the first part of the reviewed shows how to assemble the kit. I’m now had time to spend more time with the kit, as well as BalenaOS Linux based operating system optimized for running Docker containers on embedded devices, and balenaCloud services to manage a fleet of devices from a web dashboard. I’ve mostly followed the instructions in the getting started guides here and there, and will document what I had to do to prepare the image, flash it to the board, and load a sample docker application locally, and through balenaCloud. Downloading and Configuring BalenaOS for balena Fin You’ll find BalenaOS in the download page. While we are using hardware based on a Raspberry Pi Compute […]

balenaFin Developer Kit Review – Part 1: Unboxing and Assembly Instructions

balenafin power rtc battery

Balena launched balenaFin 1.1 at the end of last month. The board is a professional carrier board for Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3 / 3+ Lite that includes support for variable voltage power input, optional PoE, industrial eMMC flash storage, a real-time Arm Cortex-M4 core via Artik-020 module, and more. Somehow a balenaFin 1.1 developer kit ended up in my home, and I’ll play with it in several weeks, but in the first part of the review, I’ll just check out the content of the package, and show how to assemble the kit. BalenaFin 1.1 Developer Kit Unboxing The local courier brought a largish balena Fin package. which contained a smaller balenaFin package, and the actual developer kit. Everything is nicely packaged in the box with the part related to power supply in a white box, a small opening for smaller accessories and Raspberry Pi Compute Module 3, as well […]

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