IoT integrates the knowledge of electronics with sysadmin works. Day by day, the cost of bandwidth decreasing. Most of us with postpaid plans from ISPs have unused bandwidth left in hand. We will discuss different IoT cloud platforms for the makers and developers which can be used to test things made with Arduino, NodeMCU, Raspberry Pi. Although things made in China readily available, DIY things will always have a higher value. Many of these IoT cloud platforms have a free quota, like once various PaaS had a free quota. It is obvious that after 5-7 years, these free quota will get decreased or have some restrictions. So, before jumping to code for some currently freemium IoT cloud platform, it is practical to guess the future. There are minimum 50 large companies which provide IoT cloud platform as of now. There are too many small & medium size IoT cloud platform providers.
It is not possible for us to know and test each and every provider. We tested IBM Watson IoT platform and felt it is really easy to connect from ESP32. But like we did in the last 8 years with cloud products – it is practical to inform our users at least the presence of different service providers. Unless we use different providers, we can never say how IBM Watson IoT platform or AWS IoT platform is. We may like some providers as users/customers but that preference should not force our readers.
Different IoT Cloud Platforms
Among different IoT cloud platforms, only a few are widely known :
- Amazon Web Services (AWS) IoT
- IBM Watson IoT
- Microsoft Azure IoT
- Google Cloud Platform
Others are definitely good, such as Samsung Artik, Bosch IoT Suite and so on but really except matter of cost and superb features a common user with ESP32 dev board will avoid them. Basic reason of inclining to the above mentioned companies is a big reason – more users add more projects in different sites. It is easier for a hobbyist (also for a professional) to select provider with lot of existing code.
Most of these cloud, essentially a secure MQTT broker with a management web UI console to make it easier and more flexible to work. Adafruit has been almost a standard in DIY electronics world. They have atleast one guide using IBM, Amazon, Azure, Google.
We as blog are almost forced to choose IBM Watson IoT platform at least for now as we are used with Rackspace, HP Cloud, IBM Cloud. It is matter of laziness not to use test Amazon, Azure Cloud. Somehow, we do not feel Amazon uses good hardware behind. Unfortunately we can not offer some really “cheap cloud” for IoT at present.
So at end, the choice really on the users/consumers.