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Announcing the Golioth ESP-IDF SDK

Reporting from Shanghai, China
Aug 5, 2022

Golioth has just released an open-source SDK for the Espressif ESP-IDF, making it easier for Espressif-based projects to securely connect to the Golioth Cloud.

Golioth has just released an open-source SDK for the Espressif ESP-IDF, making it easier for Espressif-based projects to securely connect to the Golioth Cloud. All Cloud enablements on Golioth (e.g., OTA firmware updates, command and control, time-series databases, and logging) are immediately available for ESP-IDF projects.

Golioth Is About Choice

Golioth is a device-management Cloud platform designed for hardware and firmware teams who wish to connect a wide range of devices to the Internet, and make use of such device data. Choosing a hardware platform should not lock developers out of different ways of connecting to the Cloud. Golioth will support as many hardware platforms as possible to give developers the choice they need, and will provide device-side examples and firmware code-snippets to quickly prototype with the Golioth Cloud. Thus, the Golioth ESP-IDF SDK has recently joined the Zephyr RTOS SDK, and the nRF Connect SDK (based on Zephyr) as supported platforms.

Golioth Is a Cloud Built to Enable Hardware

The general requirements to leverage Golioth's Cloud services are:

    • A device with a network interface (such as LwIP running on FreeRTOS for ESP-IDF)
    • A CoAP library
    • A way to encrypt packets using DTLS
    • (Optional) CBOR encoding.

Any device-side SDK that Golioth creates from now on will have the above-mentioned elements when talking to Golioth's CoAP endpoints. As a result, Golioth has now enabled ESP-IDF-based projects to access features such as:

    • Over-the-air updates, including device-specific targeting
    • Time-series database tracking for easy management of sensor data on the Cloud
    • Command and control capabilities using state-based databases on the Cloud
    • Device logging to pass troubleshooting messages off of individual devices (fewer debug probes and USB cables involved!)
    • Easy export of all Cloud-side data to third-party visualization and cloud platforms.

Golioth is committed to continuously testing all their SDKs, so developers can be confident that the Golioth ESP-IDF SDK will continue to be tested for new Espressif hardware and, subsequently, for any changes relating to the ESP-IDF ecosystem.

The Significance of ESP-IDF

Espressif's IoT Development Framework (ESP-IDF) is a network-enabled Real-Time Operating System (RTOS) built for Espressif’s ESP32 series of SoCs. It is a complete software development framework built on the FreeRTOS Kernel. Espressif bundles a network stack using LwIP, and has adapted the RTOS to Espressif's Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and Thread modems. Additionally, there are external components and libraries available, including a build system and programming tools, so the offering is more like a distribution than a monolithic piece of software.

Why Golioth Is Interested in ESP-IDF?

Because users asked for it! Golioth is committed to providing future device-side SDKs and examples to support platforms that customers want to use.

The combination of Espressif parts and the ESP-IDF offers a cost-effective solution; one that is increasingly found in consumer-focused Wi-Fi products. There is a large community of people developing in and around the ESP-IDF. Many developers have past experience in using FreeRTOS, and now want a more integrated way to connect to the Golioth Cloud.

Golioth is particularly interested in the growing portfolio of Espressif hardware. For example, ESP32-C5, which was announced in June 2022, is based on a RISC-V core and has both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radios, which is a recent development in the low-cost Wi-Fi space. Golioth is also excited by Espressif's Thread-compliant components, such as the ESP32-H2, which is also RISC-V based with a 802.15.4 MAC and Phy, allowing these devices to easily join Thread networks. Thread devices targeted for consumer applications are surely also candidates for the forthcoming Matter standard, which is set to be released later this year.

Support for the Golioth ESP-IDF SDK

Support for the new Golioth ESP-IDF SDK is provided through the quickstart documentation. Alternatively, developers may chat about it on the Golioth Discord, post questions on the Golioth Forum, and file issues they encounter on the Golioth GitHub page.

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Ioannis

Technical Writer and Editor

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