App-less OTA announces by broadcasting a continuous renaming Essid

Nicola Guglielmi
Jan 9 · 2 min read

Introduction:

In the last month my mind was in loop with exploring the idea of use the standard broadcasting of Essid name for wireless connection join, to spread around messages for various scope.

The idea is to use the Essid name for the message itself, respecting the limit of the protocol, it should be a maximum of 32 characters. Since this length is absolutely too short for a lot of cases, I spot some uses that deserve some attention

This article collect some of the studies I did on this idea and some implementation for specific use cases.

All the works are based on the use of ESP32 or ESP8266 micro flashed with Micropython for an easy programming, but you can easily port the code to Arduino, other micro programming environment, or micro systems like Raspberry Pi.

No particular skills are required, the tutorials are very easy to follow, all the sources are in the Github repository. You can easily explore this intuition and start experimenting with continuous Essid renaming technique.

Ideas collection of use cases:

Pros/Cons:

Pro:

  • super easy to implement
  • super easy to use, no app needed
  • everyone carry a mobile
  • useful in emergency situations
  • some use cases can be autonomous systems with a small FV panel, like a weather stations

Cons:

  • range limited by the antenna
  • unreliable in high density environment due multiple signals
  • unsecure, you cannot broadcast sensitive data
  • it’s a read and broadcast system, not a datalogger, so you don’t have an history
  • battery drain due continuous broadcasting
  • connecting to the device by wireless can be a complex problem due the use of the radio interface as broadcaster

If you write any interesting project based on this idea, please let me know and I’ll be happy to link on this page if you like.

Nicola Guglielmi

Written by

Innovation Manager | Team Lead | Lead@GDG Campobasso

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