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Firmware updates over LoRaWAN

Firmware updates are essential for large-scale deployment of connected devices. Security patches protect customer and business data, and new functionality, optimization and specialization extend the lifetime of devices. This page outlines Arm's work on bringing firmware updates to LoRaWAN.

LoRaWAN is a low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) which offers kilometers of range at very low power consumption, but also offers much lower data rates than traditional networks such as Wi-Fi or cellular. In addition, LoRaWAN operates in the unlicensed spectrum (ISM band) which is subject to duty cycle limitations, and non-guaranteed quality of service. Arm's reference implementation addresses all of these problems by combining multicast, forward error correction and delta updates to create a fast, reliable and secure firmware update solution for LoRaWAN.

The reference implementation, based on Mbed OS 5.6, is available under an Apache 2.0 license, and runs on the L-TEK FF1705 development board, which combines a Multi-Tech xDot module with external flash. It is permissively licensed, and can be used in commercial products.

Arm also has a commercial update client available as part of Mbed Cloud.

Network server

This project requires a LoRaWAN network server which implements the LoRaWAN multicast and data fragmentation specifications. These specifications can be obtained from the LoRa Alliance. The Things Network implements these proposals, although not on their public infrastructure. You can contact them directly for access to the service.

Resources

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