A prototype is a preliminary model of something. Projects that offer physical products need to show backers documentation of a working prototype. This gallery features photos, videos, and other visual documentation that will give backers a sense of what’s been accomplished so far and what’s left to do. Though the development process can vary for each project, these are the stages we typically see:
Proof of Concept
Explorations that test ideas and functionality.
Demonstrates the functionality of the final product, but looks different.
Looks like the final product, but is not functional.
Appearance and function match the final product, but is made with different manufacturing methods.
Appearance, function, and manufacturing methods match the final product.
There are many ways to get your gadgets connected to each other and the internet - however we found that none provided an easy and reliable way to transfer data that was also simple to set up.
That's why we created the Webifi Connect and Webifi Shield boards, as well as a cloud-based server layer. Simply connect your Webifi board/s to the cloud-based server* and you are ready to start communicating.
* This requires a free account to be set up on the Webifi Server
We have finished the design and testing phases for board production, and are now ready for manufacture - and we need YOUR help to start!
The Webifi Connect board can be attached to most devices; while the Webifi Shield mounts only onto Arduino boards.
We have multiple software libraries to allow you to easily integrate your software with the boards.
Once attached to your device, the board then communicates to your other devices or software over the Internet after connecting to your Wifi.
ABOUT THE WEBIFI CONNECT BOARD
The Webifi Connect WiFi board measures 34.3mm x 36.8mm and is a general purpose PCB where the connection is a 2.54mm standard header connector. It has been designed to connect easily to most development kits or device that brings out its UART pins to a connector.
The Shield builds upon the Webifi Connect board but has been modified to be mounted onto your Arduino.
ABOUT THE WEBIFI SERVER LAYER
To get started using your boards, you need to register to create a free* account on our website. This provides the interface to connect all your devices. There are no restrictions on the amount of data that can be sent or the number of devices that can be connected. Please see the How it Works page on our website for more details.
* Free access is provided when using only one network. Networks are logical groups devices can belong to for sending and receiving data. If you require more than one network, you can choose to purchase a monthly subscriptions from US$5 per month.
We have gone through the development phase and are in the final phase of testing at the moment. We will be ready for the production phase as soon as we have raised enough funds from our amazing backers!
We need to test the firmware thoroughly and sort out as many problems as we can before release. We are allocating 1 to 2 months for this.
Manufacturing and testing of PCBs. This should take around 4 to 6 weeks.
We still need to write a bootloader for the PCBs to allow the user to upgrade the firmware when there are bug fixes or improvements (we are expecting around 3 weeks for development and thorough testing)
Adding all these together we plan to roll out the first round of PCBs in November 2018.
Risks and challenges
We have a software engineer working on this project who has been able to help us work through problems and identify potential problems from our customer's point of view. Additionally, I have over 20 years experience in hardware engineering, so can also foresee potential issues, including:
* Manufacturing problems: When manufacturing a lot of boards, a small problem can become a huge problem if replicated 100 times. We need to ensure our schematics and prototypes are perfect before we start manufacture.
* Real-life server loads: While we have done a lot of testing to date, it is difficult to predict what might happen when 1000 users all connect to the server at once. If this does become an issue, we are able to increase the server specs fairly easily as the server is run privately.
* Managing technical support requests: We have put a great deal of effort into making a thorough documentation area on our website which we believe will answer almost all technical questions. However, we know there will always be questions from the public, so we are currently building a Help Desk on our website to track and respond to Technical Support Requests.