The mesh network has become more common in IoT parlance over the last few years, especially in the smart home space, to make Wi-Fi more usable and effective. And lately, IoT companies have been looking for ways to improve their own networks, and implementing a mesh topology is one great way to begin.
What Is IoT Mesh?
Before we get into the why, let’s peek into what, exactly, it means when we talk about IoT Mesh Networking. An IoT mesh network links all the devices on the network together in descending branches (sometimes called nodes). The branches interconnect in such a way as to route data more efficiently between the edge devices, or endpoints, and the cloud or server processors. The result is more consistent and reliable connectivity and data transfer rates because there are always many routes from end to home and back.
Well, the first reason is the easiest one to see: reliability. The redundant pathways and multiple nodes on the network mean that an IoT mesh network just works reliably and is more resilient than other topologies to outages of nodes or connections.
The second advantage of mesh networking is coverage. With this type of architecture, you can rest assured that dead spots, when they occur, are unlikely to interfere with operations because the data can always be routed along another path from the edge to the node, be it at the cloud or an on-premise server.
Scalability is a key feature in IoT mesh. Because a mesh-style topography can automatically extend itself to include an almost unlimited number of endpoints and nodes, it can get as large as you need it to be. Mesh networks also benefit from increased range, so physical scaling is easier since signals can travel over great distances and experience fewer dead spots.
A major benefit for any business looking to implement IoT is efficiency, and mesh networks can decrease power usage and costs compared to similar sizes of traditional networks. Each node on a mesh network requires less power than conventional IoT networking because the devices don’t need to put out signals strong enough to reach the central server or cloud, only strong enough to reach the next node. This results in cost savings for battery changes, power consumption, and device longevity.
The last advantage we’ll discuss today is a big one, especially for IoT companies: security. If there is an attack or a breach of the network, the compromised node or branch can be shut down and segregated from the rest of the mesh, protecting critical data assets while not interrupting operations as the data is rerouted via other paths through the mesh. This kind of resiliency and protection in the face of security threats is tough to overcome for bad actors.
So, when you’re looking to implement or upgrade your IoT network, perhaps it’s time to consider IoT Mesh.