Join us at Enterprise5G in Atlanta – Win a FreedomFi Outdoor Bundle

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Interested in learning more about decentralized wireless?

Join us in Atlanta, GA on April 26th – 27th to hear our Vice President of Decentralized Wireless, Jameson Buffmire, breakdown what DeWi is all about and how it is going to shape the future. CalChip Connect President and Co-Founder, TJ Rancour, will also be hosting a Decentralized Wireless Workshop in the afternoon on Wednesday, April 27th. Join him and other ecosystem partners to discuss the ins and outs, check out some hardware, and ask any questions you may have.
Why You Should Attend
Decentralized Wireless Keynotes, interactive panels, networking with AWS, Baicells, MultiTech, and other 5G Leaders - plus the opportunity to win a FreedomFi Outdoor Bundle ($3,498 value) and one of five (5) MultiTech MultiConnect® CBRS Wi-Fi Access Points ($299 value each)!
The FreedomFi Outdoor Bundle consists of a FreedomFi LoRaWAN® & 5G-Ready Miner plus Baicells Nova430i pre-provisioned with FreedomFi firmware. The MultiConnect® CBRS Wi-Fi Access Point is an end-user device for use on CBRS cellular networks (like the Helium network) that provide secure, reliable, high-performance LTE broadband coverage.
FreedomFi Outdoor Small Cell Bundle
A plug-and-play outdoor cellular base station, delivered with a FreedomFi gateway, so you can provide long-range outdoor coverage for your Helium network. This Nova430i small cell comes pre-provisioned with FreedomFi firmware. 

MultiTech MultiConnect® CBRS Wi-Fi Access Point
Using a CBRS cellular OnGo network, this Wi-Fi access point enables one-to-many connectivity to families with more than one child and to multi-family buildings using Chromebooks, notebooks, desktops, and smart devices.

Subscribe And Stay Up To Date

Be sure to subscribe to stay up to date on the latest with DeWi and to be notified about drops!

About The Speaker

Jameson Buffmire, Vice President of Decentralized Wirelesss

Jameson Buffmire is currently serving as Vice President of Decentralized Wireless at CalChip Connect, North America’s leading IoT distributor. Before CalChip, Jameson was a Sr. Product Manager and Principal Analyst in Orange's Corporate Strategy Group. He’s also had Strategy and Business Development roles with Sprint Nextel and Plug and Play Tech Center, a leading Bay Area business incubator. Jameson is a passionate entrepreneur advocate, with exposure to thousands of startups. He holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Business Administration from Cal Poly, with emphasis in Finance and International Relations.
Decentralized Workshop Panel
Our CalChip Connect President and Co-Founder will also be hosting a Decentralized Wireless Workshop from 12 noon to 2 pm on Wednesday, April 27th. Join him and other ecosystem partners from Federated Wireless and MultiTech to the discuss the ins and outs of DeWi, check out some hardware, and ask any questions you may have.

TJ RANCOUR

PRESIDENT & CO-FOUNDER

CALCHIP CONNECT

CHRISTOPHER SWAN

CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER

FEDERATED WIRELESS

MICHAEL FINEGAN

AVP OF IOT BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT

MULTITECH

If you would like to come only for the Decentralized Wireless Workshop and enter to win the FreedomFi Outdoor Bundle, Enterprise5G is making this possible by allowing free entry on April 27th from noon to 2pm to a special section we will have blocked off specifically for DeWi!
Giveaway Rules
All you need to do to win the FreedomFi Outdoor Bundle is stop by the booth that we're sharing with MultiTech and fill out a quick form. And to qualify to receive the MultiTech Wi-Fi Access Point, you must be present at the event. FreedomFi Outdoor Bundle winner will be announced live at our booth on April 27th in the afternoon.
We will also be happy to speak with you to answer any questions you may have about these devices and decentralized wireless in general.
How To Register For The Event
If you would like to attend the full event, register prior to April or before the limit of 100 is reached. The first 100 individuals to register receive a free badge courtesy of CalChip Connect. That’s a savings of $795! Additional badges are 50% off the standard registration fee.

Be sure to follow us on social media for updates about this event!

Copyright 2022 CalChip Connect

Let the Revolution Begin!

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Light Miners: What's The Deal?

Shopify API

admin

mar 29, 2022

Light miners: what's the deal?

All Hotspot Miners will become "Light Miners" in the near future


What's the difference between "Light Miners" and OG Miners?

In the next 6 to 10 weeks Helium will release a "Light Miner Firmware Upgrade" to ALL hotspots from ALL manufacturers. This firmware upgrade will solve a number of stability issues that hotspot owners have been challenged with, including getting rid of "relay" hotspots and SD card issues. Overall this update should improve the quality and usability of the Helium network.

So all Hotspot Miners will become "Light Miners" in the near future and there will be NO functional difference. The "Light Miner" firmware does take less CPU power than the legacy OG Miners so in the future, new hotspot products may come to market with less powerful CPUs. In theory products with lower power CPUs may cost less than legacy OG Miner products however given the global supply chain issues in the near term it's likely to see hotspot pricing returning to standard MSRP price ranges.

What are the benefits of the "Light Miner" firmware update that all miners (including the OG) ones will be receiving?

  • No more "relay" status or the need to open "ports" on your home router
  • No longer needs to be a full blockchain node
  • Way less network usage
  • No more syncing issues

If in the future “Light Miners” and OG Miners all become the same, why is the DeWi tracking “Light Miners” on a different tab

Again all existing OG Miners will be firmware upgraded to the “Light Miner” firmware. Since the new “Light Miner” firmware requires less CPU resources, by default all approved OG Miners meet the DeWi requirements for “Light Miner”. For new products being designed to only support the upcoming “Light Miner” software release the minimum CPU requirement is lower and therefore the MOC created new specification and test processes for these new products which will only support the "Light Miner "firmware. In other words, all currently approved OG Miners meet the “Light Miner” hardware requirements, but moving forward not all Hotspots approved as “Light Miners” would be able to meet the higher CPU performance OG Miner hardware requirements. This is a bit of a moot point, as looking forward everything will become a “Light Miner”. 

When are "Light Miners" going to be available to the market? 

If you currently own a miner it will become a "Light Miner" after the firmware update. If you buy a current in-stock OG Miner it will also become a "Light Miner" after the firmware update. If you wait another 6 to 10 weeks to buy a miner it will likely come with the "Light Miner" firmware already installed.

So all in-stock miners will become "Light Miners" and are available today. CalChip is working with all our suppliers to bring new hotspots to marker in 2Q22 what will ship with the "Light Miner" firmware.  

What will be the price point?

Price points will vary by manufacturer.

Will "Light Miners" cost less than Full Miners? 

In theory, new products designed specifically for the "Light Miner" firmware could use a less powerful CPU and less memory which could allow for cost savings. However the elevated OG miner prices over the past year where mainly caused by the combination of the global semiconductor supply chain shortages amplified by the large supply demand imbalance for Helium hotspots. In the near term, Helium hotspot price points, including new "Light Miners", will mainly be driven by overall Helium hotspot market supply demand. We are optimistic that the market for Helium hotspots is starting to return to more balanced supply demand state and all hotspot miner pricing will come back to manufacturers suggested MSRP. CalChip is will working with our manufactures to bring as many new Helium Miner products to market as possible in 2022. We are also working on bring more IoT solutions that use the Helium network to market, everyone benefits from having more people use the network. (Try out our Invoxia tracker.)

Will CalChip be distributing these? 

CalChip is committed to offering our customers a wide selection of Helium compatible Hotspots, including our current inventory of OG LoRa Miners, new Hotspot Miners from our existing manufacturers, and new manufacturers entering the market. In addition, CalChip offers the first Helium compatible 5G products and are excited about expanding the capability of the Helium network.

Are you taking pre-orders?

There is no reason to wait for a "Light Miner", instead buy an existing in-stock full miner. It will receive a software upgrade to become a "Light Miner" as soon as it's approved by Helium. 

Who's manufacturing these?

See CalChip Connect Helium Miner Linecard.

Full list available here.


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IoT Suppliers Want Help

CalChip Connect

TJ R. & BEN F.

SEP 10, 2021

IoT Suppliers Want Help

Cal-Chip Connected Devices recently conducted a study across all its suppliers to get a pulse on what their needs are for 2021. Here is a run-down of some of the results of the survey.

IoT suppliers have expressed a desire for their distribution partners to help develop and promote their solution.


More Transparency and Customer Profiles

According to the data, suppliers are asking for more transparency from their distribution partners. For example, suppliers would like monthly reporting from their distribution partners indicating the number of orders received and, more specifically, who is buying which devices, why they are buying them, when, and where.  


Suppliers also want more customer insight. They requested a heatmap so suppliers can clearly see the concentration of high-volume customers. This will aid them in their prospecting efforts. Customer success stories were another area suppliers would like assistance with developing and promoting their IoT solutions.


Most interviewed felt that contact names and the company data would be most useful for suppliers. Any information gathered on the use case would be highly valuable. Suppliers are asking their distributors to share that information on a monthly strategy call. Those queried said that the partnership between them and their distributors and manufacturers is considered “a joint effort” that will benefit both sides. Knowing the names of the companies that are buying and what they’re buying will help the suppliers support companies looking to secure more business from suppliers themselves. One supplier gave an example where they might have contacts with other companies to help the supplier launch a more coordinated effort to win over the organization. Or they might identify that a buyer is in a certain industry for which they have other products that tend to sell well.

Supportive Marketing

Offering information on marketing campaign results was among the top requests from suppliers. It would be enormously beneficial if a distributor could provide suppliers with effective marketing analytics, including clicks, impressions, and ROI perspectives. Those results would clearly indicate how suppliers craft and launch future marketing communications campaigns.  


Suppliers said they would be focused on developing robust marketing plans and promoting case studies linked to various products highlighting the partners involved and how that partnership contributed to the success. Others said they would be focused on their messaging platform and how they are considered a ‘problem solver’ in their industry and the difference between being perceived as a solution provider versus a hardware provider. Perhaps even more important is the need to emphasize the benefits to the end-user. Other areas of focus include getting onboarded into the IoT ecosystem. Some suppliers have completed the technical side and are now ready in 2022 to promote it through marketing.    

Customer Engagement

Some hired new team members back in the fall to help prospects and boost their customer base. They said they now have more resources going into the new year to increase customer engagement with the new sales managers they’ve recently hired. Most are cultivating their existing partnerships and exploring new ones. They are creating new sales kits, exploring different lead development, more PoC based kits, adding webinars, and participating in sale site give away promotions. A majority said they have plans to ramp up their provisioning services.

Vertical Markets

One supplier expects to realign into new vertical markets and is expecting exciting trends to continue. Another is looking to expand their presence in the U.S. and E.U. markets. Yet others said they’ll continue to foster sound connections with their ‘bread and butter accounts and expand into new markets. They see the ‘smart home’ market as one of the more immediate pathways to growth. Advancements in indoor/outdoor asset tracking and Wi-Fi IoT product lines to cover indoor and outdoor home solutions will also be a focus. This is good news since one of the industry’s leaders that manufacture high-performance analog and mixed-signal semiconductors give devices the ability to provide real-time data and analytics for suppliers. Some other areas positioned for growth in 2022 include cold chain, IoT plug-n-play, and display tables and solutions involved with those.


Suppliers would like their distribution partners to help support their social media initiatives and participate in joint marketing and public relations efforts. They want to be very strategic with their distribution partners, working with them on new product launches, gaining support from an operational standpoint, and cultivating leads, along with meeting sales goals. Clear, ongoing, and open communication between the distribution partners and their suppliers ranked the top three requests.


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Why Fundamental Collaboration Is the Key Driver to the Success of the IoT Revolution

TJ Rancour

TJ R.

AUG 27, 2021

Why Fundamental Collaboration Is the Key Driver to the Success of the IoT Revolution

The IoT revolution requires a fundamental business practice to succeed: collaboration.


Like anything that has the potential to surpass the survival stage and achieve massive success in both favorable and challenging conditions, whether those conditions be political or economic, the IoT (Internet of Things) movement, or revolution as I like to call it, requires a fundamental component to succeed. And that component goes well beyond sensors and gateways. I’m referring to an essential in all business practices, and that is collaboration.


Every technology ecosystem foundation includes the basics, hardware, software, and services, that ultimately convert data into intelligence that we all can use for practical, everyday applications. I have found in my professional experience that no single technology platform, OEM, or service provider can successfully supply all the necessary elements to create the perfect and complete ecosystem. Thus, we need something intangible – an honest, pure, and benevolent connection between each other.

Collaboration

It’s no secret that teams that work together, cohesively, towards a common goal tend to achieve better results. Collaboration reduces the barriers to productivity, and in the IoT world, speed to market coupled with accuracy and functionality are critical to the success of any new technology solution.


Some predict that the next generation IoT will rely heavily on human-centered approaches, and to some extent, we’re already there. In AI, connectivity, and security, technology companies have built their platforms based on empathy with the people using the product or service. The premise is that by understanding the end-user’s needs, wants, and desires, the product team will build a solution that will be extremely useful and easy to use for the audience in which the solution was intended.


Suppose our goal is to deploy IoT architectures with better efficiency, scalability, security, and long-term applicability. In that case, we need to keep in mind the link between technology and human connection. My recommendation is to reach out to those who supported your career early on, whether a mentor, professor, football coach, neighbor or business associate. Ask how you can help them. You’ll be surprised at the fantastic opportunities you’ll uncover for both you, your company, and your connections.


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IoT.2: A New Trend in IoT

Brian Bielawski

BRIAN B.

AUG 26, 2021

IOT.2: A NEW TREND

There’s a new trend in the IoT space, and it’s called IoT.2. If you haven’t experienced it yet, here’s what’s happening.

As we navigate Covid-19, IoT has reached early adulthood thanks to innovation during and because of the pandemic.


IoT Space

Since the arrival of the term “IoT” and the switch from the M2M mindset to the IoT mindset, forward-thinking companies have raced to be first to market with “industry disruptive” or “transformative” IoT solutions. However, more and more companies leveraging IoT for the last few years are coming to us with a similar story. Although they’ve had some success because they were among the early adopters, some of the cutting-edge solutions they’ve invested in are, funnily enough, outdated.


The problem is, in 2016, IoT as a whole was reaching its adolescence. As we navigate the COVID-19 pandemic, IoT has reached early adulthood thanks to innovation during and because of the pandemic. And that means for companies looking to scale and scale, big, hard choices have to be made about scrapping much of the work done and deployed in the last six years and standardizing on the technologies that won the race. Anyone in NorAm who deployed Sigfox or MiWi knows this fact better than anyone. There was no ecosystem to support those technologies, unlike open technologies like LoRaWAN. The rise of LoRa caused the demise of those leading ‘closed system’ technologies that were critical in the early years of IoT. The vendor lock didn’t work; the people have voted against it. Instead, significant open ecosystems like LoRaWAN are gaining momentum at breakneck speed.


For some companies, this could be a difficult pill to swallow. In IoT’s infancy, everyone did whatever it took to get their solution into the market the quickest. Foresight and thoughtfulness often gave way to speed and PR splashes. The “right” answer was usually “good enough.” Now, company leaders are rethinking and reexamining their approach to the IoT space. This became very clear when I spoke to dozens of companies at the Miami IoT Evolution Expo in June.


The consensus was that these companies are planning to consolidate, and it’s mainly around the technology. They deployed at scale. They know it’s a hard decision to re-work what they’ve built, particularly for those who’ve sunk millions of dollars into the build and now they need to start over. It’s painful, but like so many technologies in the past, IoT has matured. These intelligent leaders know it’s time to evolve.

IoT.2

Here are some of the IoT.2 questions companies should be asking: Is there a better technology today than the one we chose? Better meaning faster, smaller, more affordable, or allowing more data? Did we architect this in an optimal way or for scale? Can we consolidate our vendor engagement, and are we future-proof? Is the ecosystem that supports my technology growing or shrinking? How have sales and deployment models been going?


It might be going great. Some people placed smart bets, and it was future-proof. Not everyone needs to regroup and take a hit. Some IoT disruptive technologies have been an enormous success. Cold chain and temperature monitoring in the foodservice industry is one shining example. Allowing manufacturers, distributors, and restaurant operators to move away from paper record-keeping and into digital record-keeping. Providing digital temperature monitoring was revolutionary in the healthcare industry, and its impact was widespread, possibly lifesaving. In agriculture, a game-changer was moving to battery-operated soil moisture sensing and remote valve control, thus freeing up farmers to do other work. IoT technology-enabled contact tracing during the COVID pandemic initial outbreak made the return to offices safer for employees and continues to be used by hundreds of thousands of healthcare workers as I write this.


It’s at least worth asking oneself the IoT.2 questions. Over time this might save companies a lot of time, pain, and money if they can hit the reset button now versus 4-5 years from now when their technology completely sunsets. Now is the time to look at this, ask the hard questions, and make the difficult decisions before sinking more investment into technologies and architectures that might have a cap to their scalability.

Refresh

If you’re due for an IoT.2 refresh, you don’t have to go it alone. A few years ago, you’d have to go out there and talk to a hundred people to find out what was available, but now there are plenty of IoT experts that can fill you in on everything IoT and have sorted through the vaporware for you. You no longer have to suffer through the bleeding edge. You could continue to do it yourself, but why? It won’t save you money. There are aggregators in IoT today. Find one of them and work with them. And it doesn’t need to be a long, drawn-out process. Within a couple of weeks or months, you can identify the next big step on your IoT journey, including a cost-effective way to rip and replace, scrap, and rebuild your new, more innovative empire.


IoT.2 has started, and the landscape has changed. It’s worth a new look with fresh eyes.


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CalChip Connect Adds ADTRAN to their LoRaWAN IoT Product Mix

CalChip Connect

ADMIN

OCT 22, 2021

Calchip Connect Adds ADTRAN to their lorawan IoT product mix

ADTRAN, a leading global networking and communications equipment supplier is the newest addition to CalChip Connect's Supplier of High Quality innovative IoT Device Solutions

Our LoRaWAN® product portfolio is certified with AWS and Senet and was developed to work seamlessly with the broader elements within the LoRaWAN ecosystem, like other gateways and sensors


Warminster, PA — CalChip Connect (CCC) welcomes ADTRAN to its family of IoT gateway and sensor device product and solution offerings.

ADTRAN is best known in the industry for building business-grade reliable products. "We created our new LoRaWAN® product portfolio in support of our overall mission to provide affordable LoRaWAN connectivity to the commercial markets," said Keith Atwell, Head of Global Business Development.


The ADTRAN 7310-08 LoRaWAN IoT Gateway is ideal for use in enterprises, small businesses, and industrial IoT applications, typically in or around buildings. It offers eight channels, an external antenna, PoE powering and a Gigabit interface for ample backhaul performance. In addition, it can easily be configured via a Bluetooth® interface, eliminating the need for hard-wired connections. Monitoring range is significantly enhanced when the device is mounted and paired with a high gain external antenna.


"Our LoRaWAN product portfolio is certified with AWS and Senet and was developed to work seamlessly with the broader elements within the LoRaWAN ecosystem, like other gateways and sensors," said Atwell. The device provides a reliable connection to a public or private LoRaWAN network and is designed and built specifically for IoT machine-to-machine communications.

"We're very pleased to bring ADTRAN's product portfolio into our mix of high quality LoRaWAN devices," said TJ Rancour, President, CalChip Connect. Their products underscore the massive movement taking place where companies like us are working to connect consumers and industries with the highest performing solutions and devices available on the market today," said Rancour.

About Adtran

ADTRAN, Inc. is a leading global provider of open, disaggregated networking and  communications solutions that enable voice, data, video, and internet communications across any network infrastructure. From the cloud edge to the subscriber edge, ATRAN empowers communications service providers around the world to manage and scale services that connect people, places, and things. ADTRAN solutions are currently in use by servicing providers, private enterprises, government organizations, and millions of individual users worldwide. Find more at ADTRAN, Linkedin and Twitter.


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How IoT Can Improve Your Manufacturing Operations

CalChip Connect

ADMIN

OCT 15, 2021

How IoT Can Improve Your Manufacturing Operations

Manufacturing is the biggest adopter of IoT to date. Not only does IoT help increase automation, it provides visibility into the entire manufacturing process


Manufacturers are faced with numerous challenges in the quest to improve efficiency, safety, and quality in their operations. Taking advantage of opportunities presented by IoT is one way to create more value in manufacturing going concerns. For instance, the sensors in IoT devices can monitor the temperature in a manufacturing facility. If there is an abnormal temperature rise, the sensor can alert a manager remotely, who can then address the issue immediately.


According to Fortune Business Insights, the IoT market was worth $250 billion in 2019. The size of the market is set to grow more than five-fold by 2027. Some industries that will adopt IoT rapidly are agriculture and healthcare. In agriculture, IoT can unlock precision farming, which uses sensors and robots to provide the best possible care for plants. It minimizes the risk in agriculture that arises because of inaccuracies in farming inputs used.


Manufacturing remains the biggest adopter of IoT to date. It helps increase automation, provides visibility into the whole manufacturing operation, and reduces the time-to-market for innovations. If it’s possible to create a sensor for a certain parameter, it’s possible to apply IoT technology to improve a process. Some applications of IoT are pretty intriguing. It’s predicted that IoT will trigger another industrial revolution in this decade.

Quality Control

Traditionally, manufacturing operations monitored quality by randomly taking a few samples every few minutes or hours to check whether they met set parameters. However, installing sensors to monitor quality indicators continually and transmit that data in real-time is now possible. Data can be collected through thermal sensors, video, and dimension sensors. This way, an alarm can be triggered if there is a deviation.


Real-time identification of problems in manufacturing reduces wastage because corrective action is taken immediately when a deviation occurs. IoT devices also help to reduce the time to diagnose and fix faults. The data can show the stage where the fault occurs.

Inventory Management

Industrial inventory management relies heavily on RFID tags put on every item. These tags have unique identification numbers that represent unique information about an item. The data is then extracted for processing.


A combination of RFID and IoT technologies can lead to helpful business insights coming from the data gathered. A good example would be installing sensors that can collect data about the expected expiration date of goods based on real-time information about their condition. This can help minimize waste. IoT devices can also be applied in smart shelves and storage bins to monitor stock levels in real-time. Organizations can monitor stock usage patterns then inform manufacturing decisions. During transit, real-time location monitoring through IoT devices can help identify delays in shipping so that contingency measures are taken if necessary.

IoT Aids Predictive Maintenance

One of the biggest investments in manufacturing operations is heavy equipment. Lengthening the useful life of capital assets and maximizing their uptime is of paramount importance.


Without IoT devices being installed, manufacturing enterprises rely on regular checks for signs of faults in the manufacturing line. However, just as with monitoring real-time information on the quality of goods produced, it’s possible to monitor the condition of the machines themselves. Such things as temperature, vibrations, and fuel consumption can be used to tell whether maintenance is due or a particular part is worn out.


A predictive maintenance approach has several advantages. Preventing faults before they occur lengthens the useful life of machines and reduces the time for the production line. It also saves costs associated with breakdowns.

Visibility Into Equipment Utilization

Manufacturers can use IoT technology to gather information about real-time equipment utilization. Using control systems architecture such as SCADA (Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition) and sensors, it is possible to collect data on machine run times, operating speeds, cycle times, idling and more. Engineers can then compare these actual performance figures with their utilization benchmarks. The complex data can then be processed and visualized to factory workers visually via apps. The entire system can be set up to provide users with real-time visibility instead of delayed periodic reports. 

Real-Time Visibility in the Supply Chain

The application of IoT technology allows companies to know the availability and locations of goods in the supply chain and their conditions. Traditionally, goods ordered would be sealed and only opened for inspection at the point of delivery. However, sensors attached to the packaging can transmit real-time temperature, humidity, or any shocks. This data is important because there will be clauses on who bears the cost. The buyer can avoid receiving damaged goods, while the supplier can alert their driver or shipping company to take corrective action to prevent damage to goods. 

Resource Optimization in Manufacturing

IoT can improve virtually any process if there is a sensor that can be installed to collect specific data. The data can then be processed to get actionable insights into the process. This can vastly impact resource usage in manufacturing as well as quality control. Other applications of IoT include smart metering. An IoT device is deployed to send information on electric power, water, or fuel usage. The goal would be to take corrective action in case the use is deemed inefficient.


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Designing an Online E-Commerce Store for IoT Hardware

Benjamin Friend

BEN F.

OCT 5, 2021

Designing an Online E-Commerce Store for IoT Hardware

Having just gone through the process, I thought I’d share some insights on designing the ideal E-Commerce experience for IoT hardware devices.

Checkout these tips and tricks for designing an online-ecommerce store for iot hardware.


Focus on the End Game

When designing a store, stay focused on the primary goal of selling your products. It’s easy to get sidetracked. Set up a wireframe with your key components first, then build the ideal site from there. Ask for your team’s input. I’ve found my team members and outside vendors provide excellent insight and perspective, often in areas that I haven’t necessarily considered at the time of development.

Tagging

Make sure you use a solid Tagging System, notably when you’re featuring a myriad of products. You’ll need to segment them in different ways. Pay attention to details because, in all probability, you are selling complicated products, and they need to be presented to your customers in a ‘user-friendly’ and accurate manner. If you can determine up front if your customer understands the intricacies of the hardware, software, or particular technology solution you’re selling, it will alleviate a lot of returns and customer back and forth after the sale. You may want to consider surveying them upfront and finding out their specific needs and why they are considering buying your product.


If you have multiple suppliers, you’ll need to take great care in tagging the right product with the corresponding manufacturer. You can tag your products by specific suppliers or different categories. For example, you can tag them by device type or within the particular ecosystem or network for further clarification and ease of identification for your customers and your fulfillment department. We chose the concept of ‘choose your journey,’ which gives the user the option of virtually ‘traveling’ down different paths on our website and arriving at a point where the products or solutions they need are on the page in which they’ve landed. To ensure a smooth journey and that customers find what they’re looking for, tagging correctly is of the utmost importance.

Do Your Research

Do your research first. Explore your options. You’ll want to familiarize yourself with the complexity of the various E-Commerce platforms like Shopify that are available and determine which one is best suited for your company’s and customers’ needs. Take time to consider the customer experience and how they will interact with your website. As you develop the flow of your site, keep in mind you’ll want to create an easy-to-use experience for your customers. You’ll be the one to master the platform’s functionality, so be sure to research the ins and outs so you know how to best present your products and services to your customers through the platform.  

Put Customer Experience First

As you think about creating the ideal customer journey, be educational. Provide information that helps them understand your products beyond just their usage. This is particularly important in IoT because a lot of this is still a concept sell in terms of gateways and sensors. Your biggest hurdle may be educating your customers about IoT and what they can do with it. An excellent method is to capitalize on use cases and case studies. The outside-the-box ideas always grab customer’s attention and gain recognition. Your customers want to know how they can get these devices to work to meet their individual needs.


Capitalize on the momentum that is building right now in the IoT space and E-Commerce in general. Continue to offer more options in your particular ecosystem(s). Offer more solutions that run on a specific network, for example, the Helium network, and consider adding accessories like outdoor casing. Additional customer purchases will make your initial customer purchases more lucrative.

Capitalize on Connections

I found that getting help from affiliates was probably the single most significant advantage when creating the optimum E-Commerce site and driving traffic to it. Look at others within your network who have a strong following in areas that pertain to what you’re selling. Find affiliates and build strong relationships with them. Connect with key influencers who have an authentic point of view. See who is following you on social media, check how many followers they have, and determine if their audience is a good candidate for your solution. Get your solution in front of them, and they, in turn, will expose your solution to their audience. Make full use of the people that follow you on social media. It’s better to have few followers who are a good solid match than a million followers who aren’t. Your key driver should be, “Who can help us get in front of the most people in our target market.” One way is to diversify your audiences. Here at CalChip Connect, we have influencers in the cryptocurrency space, others in new tech gadgets, and others in IoT. Remember to reward your affiliates for all of their hard work and efforts!

Worth the Effort

Don’t be afraid to tackle this. I found it was completely worth the time and effort. And when you do this right, you’ll end up with a site that will not only potentially generate long-term sales for your company but also serve as a strong brand identity and marketing tool.


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