Sierra Wireless' Aleos Application Framework (AAF) makes machine-to-machine (M2M) application development and deployment easier (Fig. 1). It allows Lua scripts to run on Sierra Wireless gateways like the GX440 (Fig. 2).
Before AAF, developers could configure Sierra Wireless gateways using over 600 parameters. Lua is a popular embedded scripting language. The new support allows third party Lua applications to be developed and downloaded to these gateways providing programmatic management. Applications support multithreading. The applications are typically running on 600MHz ARM9 platforms. Depending upon the gateway, the applicataions may have access to serial ports, Ethernet, USB, Modbus, CAN, and more.
Developers can use the Eclipse-based Embedded Application Framework to develop Lua applications. There is a Lua plug-in including a Lua debugger. Sierra Wireless also contributed code to the Koneki open source M2M project. The Lua scripts have access to the AAF that can link the application to Sierra Wireless' AirVantage web-based management system.
AirVantage provides application distribution and management in addition to storing data from devices and gateways. AAF and AirVantage provide simple end-to-end integration and security.
Sierra Wireless also announced new AirPrime Q2698 module (Fig. 3) to its Q Series product line. It is an M2M embedded module that can provide 3G cellular network connectivity in international locations. It supports Sierra Wireless' Open AT Application Framework that used the C programming language. The module is designed to work with the AirPrime management services.
The Q2698 module can be customized to meet business-specific M2M requirements. The AirPrime Q2698 module includes GPS support allowing it to be used in applications like fleet management or asset tracking. It also has analog and digital audio support in addition to digital interfaces.
Sierra Wireless does a good job at simplifying M2M programming, development and deployment. It support custom end nodes as well as bridging to other networks like Modbus or Sierra Wireless end nodes like the AirPrime Q Series.