In a previous blog post, we described the process of connecting Cassia’s gateways to a cellular network using the Soracom USB Onyx dongle. In this post, we’ll focus on how end-users can stream the data coming from Cassia’s gateways into the Soracom network and onto the AWS IoT services.
Unlocking the Potential Cassia’s Gateway
The Cassia Bluetooth Low Energy gateway can seamlessly collect data from Bluetooth Low Energy sensors installed on any number of devices. This data is then collected in real-time and analyzed in the cloud. End-users can analyze the data to create actionable insights. For example, information about temperature, vibration, voltage, and machine failures in an industrial setting can be used for predictive maintenance and condition monitoring applications. Cassia also offers Bluetooth Low Energy gateways for digital health IoT applications when deployed in a hospital or clinical facility when connected to medical devices and/or wireless sensors.
Connecting a Cassia Bluetooth Low Energy gateway to Soracom’s Connectivity Solutions
To connect a Cassia Bluetooth Low Energygateway to Soracom’s connectivity solutions, end-users can employ some of Soracom’s advanced services, specifically their protocol conversion solution SORACOM Beam. This will provide a unique way to ease deployment complexity and use less cellular data while still providing a secure encrypted connection to AWS IoT or any IoT cloud.
When connecting through Soracom Beam, the end-user would first have to generate x.509 certificates and load them onto each Cassia gateway. The process of connecting the gateway via MQTT to AWS’s IoT requires that it’s MQTTS encrypted. Soracom Beam provides a secure encrypted connection using a single x.509 certificate for all traffic, eliminating the need to put a certificate on every individual gateway within a deployment. All of the traffic is securely encrypted into the Soracom network using Soracom Air, allowing Beam to then offer a secure and private connection to AWS IoT.
For deployments that utilize thousands of gateways, certificate management becomes costly and very complex even when automated. By combining Soracom Air and Beam, the end-user benefits from significant cost reduction and ease of deployment. Furthermore, this simplifies the process by eliminating the high overhead of data encryption.
How to Configure Your Cassia Bluetooth Low Energy Gateway using the IoT Access Controller (AC)
Once the Onyx dongle is securely attached to the Cassia gateway (please see the step-by-step directions from our blog here), you should be able to reach the Soracom network through a local wireless carrier. Next, let’s demonstrate how to connect the Cassia gateway to Soracom Beam and then to AWS IoT.
The first step is to install Cassia’s AC in the cloud. In the below example, we have installed it on an EC2 instance using CENTOS 7 as the base OS. For additional details, please see our documentation here.
Once the AC is installed, you should see the list of gateways as seen in the screenshot below.
Next, select the gateway you are trying to configure and the following pop-up menu will appear. Select config. In the AC, you can select the configuration settings that define where the MQTT packets and MQTT topics are sent. At this point, you can enter the connectivity details that will send the data to Soracom Beam. Here is a link explaining how to set up and configure Soracom Beam Entry Point.
From the Soracom console, head over to the grouping screen where you can group the SIMs from the Cassia gateways and send their data to Beam.
Once Beam is configured to send the packets to AWS IoT via MQTTS, which is encrypted, your Bluetooth data should now be securely transmitted from the Cassia gateway, through Soracom Beam, and out into AWS IoT.
The image below shows the MQTTS data being received from the Cassia gateway and transmitted into AWS IoT, for the topic to which it is subscribed. From here, you can send the data to AWS services/instances, like DynamoDB, Kinesis, S3 buckets, or any other service to collect, store and visualize your application’s data.
Powerful and Secure Connectivity
In sum, by using Soracom’s services such as Air and Beam to collect Bluetooth Low Energy data from Cassia’s gateways, developers benefit from a secure and cost-effective way to get their products to market quickly and efficiently.