Announcing The Golioth ESP-IDF SDK

Today, Golioth is releasing 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 (OTA firmware updates, command and control, time-series databases, 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 to connect a wide range of devices to the internet and make use of device data.

We believe choosing a hardware platform should not lock you out of different ways of connecting to the Cloud. Golioth will support as many hardware platforms as possible to give you the choice you need, and will provide device-side examples and firmware code snippets to quickly prototype with the Golioth Cloud.

Today, the ESP-IDF SDK joins 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 our 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 we create will have these elements when talking to our CoAP endpoints. As a result, we now have 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 3rd party visualization and cloud platforms.

We are committed to continuous testing for all of our SDKs and you can be confident that the Golioth ESP-IDF SDK will continue to be tested for new hardware from Espressif and any changes that develop on the ESP-IDF ecosystem.

What is the ESP-IDF?

The Espressif IoT Development Framework (ESP-IDF) is a network-enabled Real Time Operating System (RTOS) built for Espressif’s ESP32 family of components. It is a complete software development framework built on the FreeRTOS Kernel. Espressif bundles a network stack using LwIP and adapted the RTOS for their 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 the ESP-IDF?

Because our users asked for it! Golioth is committed to providing future device-side SDKs and examples to support platforms that our 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 devs have past experience using FreeRTOS, and wanted a more integrated way to connect to the Golioth Cloud.

We are particularly interested in the growing portfolio of Espressif components. For example, the ESP32-C5 announced last month is based on a RISC-V core and has both 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz radios, a recent development in the low-cost Wi-Fi space. We are also excited by the Thread compliant components being developed, such as the ESP32-H2, which is also RISC-V based and has a 802.15.4 MAC and Phy, allowing these devices to easily join Thread networks, which we have been writing about in the past few weeks. Thread devices targeted for consumer applications are surely also candidates for the forthcoming Matter standard, set to be released later this year.

Golioth’s Future: More Device SDKs

If you have a platform we are not currently developing for, we’d love to hear about it! Email us at [email protected].

For support on the new Golioth ESP-IDF SDK, checkout out the quickstart documentation, come chat about it on our Golioth Discord, post longer form questions on our Forum, and file issues you encounter on the GitHub page. In future posts, we’ll showcase the ESP-IDF SDK with examples in video and blog format. We can’t wait to see what you build!