Modelling the energy consumption for over-the-air software updates in LPWAN networks: SigFox, LoRa and IEEE 802.15.4g

Peter Ruckebusch, Spilios Giannoulis, Ingrid Moerman, Jeroen Hoebeke, Eli De Poorter
2018 Internet of Things  
The recent trend towards the use of low-power wide-area-networks (LPWAN) communication technologies in the Internet of Things such as SigFox, Lora and Weightless gives rise to promising applications in smart grids, smart city, smart logistics, etc. where tens of thousands of sensors in a large area are connected to a single gateway. However, to manage such a sheer number of deployed devices, solutions to provide over-the-air firmware updates are required. This paper analyses the feasibility of
more » ... ver-the-air (partial) software updates for three LPWAN technologies (LoRa, SigFox and IEEE-802.15.4g) and discusses the best suited update method for different scenarios: full system updates, application updates and network stack updates. The results indicate that full firmware upgrades consume a substantial amount of energy, especially for the lowest bit-rate LPWAN technologies such as SigFox which drains a single AA battery with 2% when performing a version update. However, technologies with a similar range (i.e. LoRa SF12) require only 0.12%. The trade-off between range and energy (or bit-rate) becomes clear when considering that the least sensitive technology (IEEE-802.15.4g-OFDM) consumes only 0.0001%. Partial updates require significantly less energy for all technolo- * Corresponding author Preprint submitted to Journal of Internet of Things September 19, 2018 gies. Adding a single application uses 6 to 38 times less energy compared to a firmware update, depending on the update method and LPWAN technology. Even partial network stack updates (i.e. MAC) cost 3 to 8 times less energy, making over-the-air updates feasible.
doi:10.1016/j.iot.2018.09.010 fatcat:4o6rijee2zf2jcop6qik6wio4u