Is BlinkUp suitable for production use? [Answered: Yes]


#1

I bought an Electric Imp SD Card and then tried to join it to my Wi-Fi network using the BlinkUp Android application. It took me an hour to find that I had to use “Legacy Mode”.

Electric Imp are the only people to use it. Amazon Echo users have installed 30M devices using ad-hoc wireless access to configure the device.

  • Is Blinkup suitable for production?
  • Does ElectricImp also offer a ad-hoc wireless solution like Particle?

#2

No alternative to blink-up-based provisioning is currently offered, though it is intended that a future release will enable Bluetooth-based provisioning on those imps which support Bluetooth.

Having said that, it has been some while since manufacture of imp001 cards ended, and significant improvements have since been made on the reliability of blink-up. Your imp001 will have contained what is now a very old firmware version. This means that, once you succeeded in blinking-up your imp001 using the “Legacy mode” appropriate to such old firmware, it will have upgraded itself to a more modern version with better blink-up support.

More modern imps – including all those recommended for production use – come with that improved firmware already installed, and do not require the use of “Legacy mode” blink-up.

Peter


#3

Essentially, that’s the issue here - when the card you bought was made, and the OS loaded, there was little android support. imp001 cards have not been made since 2014, and most stock is probably earlier than that.

Android is a special case as Android phones cannot sustain repeatable frame rates, and so a different protocol - trilevel, to embed a clock - needed to be built. This got widely deployed in late 2014 and further refined in late 2016 to be able to cope with blinkup from a web app (on a phone or a laptop).

Obviously, any commercial product would be using a recent OS version and hence wouldn’t suffer from this. To prove the point, there are customers who don’t even have an app (they rely on javascript web blinkup) who have hundreds of thousands of units in the field.

BLE provisioning is available on the imp004m (which has a BLE radio) but only for production devices. You currently need to configure all developer devices via blinkup.


#4

Thank you for a great reply. My mind has been set at rest. I like the very high value delivered by the Electric Imp platform but had been worried about this.


#5

Thank you for a great reply. My mind has been set at rest. I like the very high value delivered by the Electric Imp platform but had been worried about this. I particularly like the example you give of a JavaScript blink-up. This could work well for my application.