Reolink Argus Eco Review – A Sub-$100 Solar Powered Security Camera

Reolink Argus Eco IP Camera Wall Mounted

I’ve been thinking about installing one or more IP camera in my home for a while, and for ease of installation and considering I’m renting, my preference was to go with one of those battery IP cameras similar to Amazon (Immedia) Blink IP camera or Eufy EverCam security camera that last six months to one year on a single charge. But earlier this year I came across Reolink Argus 2 battery powered security camera that looks like good value at $100, and also came with an optional solar panel so you don’t have to ever charge the camera.  The company latter contacted me to know whether I’d be willing to try out their latest Reolink Argus Eco camera with similar features but an even lower $89.99 price tag. I got my sample a few weeks ago, and I had time to install it, and play around with the camera during that time, so  I’m now ready to report my experience …

Giveaway Week – CHOETECH 24W Foldable Solar Charger

Choetech Solar Charger Accessories

The second item for this giveaway week won’t really be a maker product, although you could probably integrate it in your solar powered project, but it should be useful mostly for hiking or other outdoor activities: CHOETECH 24W foldable solar charger. That’s a battery-less foldable system with four solar panels delivering up to 24 watts that can be used to charge your phone or tablet through up to two USB ports. I found it to be easy to fit to my backpack, be rainproof, and I could charge my phone at about 5 Watts (5V/1A) under decent sunlight, so it’s mostly doing the job you’d expect it to do. To enter the draw simply leave a comment below. Other rules are as follows: Only one entry per contest. I will filter out entries with the same IP and/or email address. Contests are open for 48 hours starting at 10am (Bangkok time) every day. Comments will be closed after 48 hours. …

CHOETECH 24W Foldable Solar Charger Review

Foldable Solar Charger Charging Smartphone

A short while ago, I wrote about  a tri-panel waterproof solar power bank that delivers up to 4 Watts and comes with 10,000 mAh capacity. I’ve now received a sample of a somewhat similar product, except CHOETECH told me it can deliver up to 24 Watts, which should be more suitable for charging devices like smartphone daily. CHOETECH 24W Solar Charger Unboxing The gadget is supposed to be fitted on larger backpacks as we’ll see below, but it comes in a relatively small package. The thing just looks like some purse or wallet out of the box. Once it’s unfolded we’ll see four solar panel, six hoops around the design, and some pouch / pocket on the right. The “junction box” includes a micro USB to USB cable, some silica gel, and four metal hoops to hook around some of the 6 fabric hoops The text on the photo above explains cloudy weather and indirect sunlight may cause the phone …

Tri-Panel Waterproof Solar Power Bank Sells for $25

A few years ago, I purchased a power bank with a solar panel, but it only came with a 1.5W panel, and I found it took around 10 to 20 days to charge the 8,000 / 10,000 mAh battery in sunny Thailand, allowing me to charge the phone 4 times. So the rate of charge was not quite enough for self-sufficiency, and while I placed the power bank on a roof outdoors, it was not ideal since it was not waterproof, and I forgot to remove it sometimes when it rained, but it still survived for over two years… Solar power bank are mostly useful if you go outdoors in places without electricity for a few days, or if you have a project that would benefit from being powered that way. Depending on your requirements, a faster rate of charge and waterproofness may be useful features to have and that’s exactly what IPRee waterproof solar panel charger kit offers with …

RAK8211-NB iTracker Battery / Solar Powered Module Comes with NB-IoT & Bluetooth 5 Connectivity, GPS, and 5 Sensors

RAK8211-NB-iTracker

Rak Wireless has recently launched a new products called RAK8211-NB iTracker based on a Quectel BC95-G NB-IoT module, Nordic Semi nRF52832 Bluetooth 5 chip, and Quectel L70-R GNSS module. The asset tracker module also comes with 5 different sensors to monitor motion and environmental data, and can optionally be powered directly by a solar panel.RAK8211-NB iTracker specifications: Connectivity NB-IoT via Quectel BC95-G (Global) wireless communication module + SIM card socket Bluetooth 5 via Nordic Semi nRF52832 Arm Cortex-M4F micro-controller (Arduino compatible) GPS/GLONASS via Quectel L70 GNSS module Sensors LIS3DH 3-axis “nano” accelerometer LIS2MDL 3-axis digital magnetic sensor. Tilt sensor BME280 pressure, humidity and temperature sensor OPT3001 intensity of light sensor Expansion – 3x headers with SWD, 2x sensor out + tilt out (also usable as GPIO and analog inputs), 3.3V, GND, and reset Power Supply – 3.5V to 18V via solar panel (P2) or battery (P3) Dimensions – 43mm x 38mm x 18mm Temperature Range – 40°C to +85°C The …

SODAQ SARA is an Arduino Compatible Cellular IoT Board with LTE-M, NB-IoT, and GNSS (Crowdfunding)

There really seems to be a push for cellular IoT those days, with new hardware coming up every week.  Following up on their NB-IoT shield for Arduino last year, SODAQ has now launched two versions of SARA boards based on u-blox SARA LTE-IoT modules, and u-blox M8Q GPS/GNSS module. Both boards are Arduino compatible thanks to a Microchip SAMD21 MCU, and while u-blox SARA board follows the Arduino form factor, u-box SARA SFF is much more compact (50×25.4 mm) and potentially easier to integrate into a project or product. Another pretty unique feature (AFAICT) is that you can power the board directly with a solar panel. u-blox SARA board specifications: Wireless module (three options) with external antenna: SARA-N211 NB-IoT, band 8 and 20, for the European and African market SARA-R410M Dual mode LTE-M and NB-IoT module for all global bands SARA-R412M Triple mode module with LTE-M, NB-IoT and 2G for all global bands Micro SIM card sholder Location Module – …

8Power Vibration Energy Harvesting Technology Powers Batteryless LPWAN GPS Trackers, MEMS Sensors

While IoT products usually promises one to 10 years battery life, they will be several billions of them, and ARM’s CEO even forecast one trillion IoT devices in the next 20 years. Recharging batteries at home may be fine, but imagine having to recharge or replace batteries on top of electric poles, inside walls, in remote locations, and other hard to reach places, considerable resources would have to be deployed just to replace or recharge battery every year or whenever the battery is close to being depleted.  That’s why work on energy harvesting technology for batteryless devices may be so important, and 8Power is one of the companies working in the field through their vibration energy harvesting technology that is said to harvest up to 10x the power of competing devices under comparable condition thanks to the use of parametric resonance phenomenon. The company has recently announced their Track 100 family of LPWAN GPS tracker, such as Track 100XL relying on …

Barionet 1000 DIN Rail Programmable I/O Controller Runs OpenWrt

Barix, a Swiss company specializing IP- based communications and control technology, has introduced a new Barionet programmable I/O controller with Barionet 1000, the first model of the company to run Linux, and in this case OpenWrt, and to offer WiFi and USB connectivity. Barionet 1000 specifications: Processor – Undisclosed System Memory – 64MB RAM Storage – 16MB flash Connectivity – 10/100M Ethernet, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n; IPv4 & IPv6 support. USB – 2x USB Host Ports Serial – 1x DB9 RS-232 serial port User programmable I/Os 2x relay outputs (30 VDC max, 5 A) 4x open collector digital outputs (4 x 24 VDC, 0.3 A) 8x contact closure inputs (0 – 15 V), including 4x 12-bit analog inputs (0 – 15 V) 1-wire interface for 18DS20 temperature sensor Misc – 11 LED status indicators Power Supply – 9 to 30V DC (2.5 Watts max) Dimensions –  103mm x 85mm x 31mm; plastic DIN Rail Case Temperature Range – Operating: 0 to …