Starting from Charles, the way MicroBots work dramatically changes. Prota Charles simplifies a lot of user interactions and solves many problems that Prota Bernard has been suffering from. Let us explain why Charles is a big deal from a user’s perspective.
Recap: What is Prota Charles?
Simply put, it’s the cloud version of Prota OS. But it actually covers much more than the software running in the cloud. Prota encompasses the firmware on a hardware device (MicroBot), the communication module in a smartphone app (software Edge a.k.a Edge library) or a Prota device (Edge device), and the cloud service that manages all devices and interacts with users.
What users see
The most obvious feature that Prota Charles provides is cloud-pairing (so that it turns a smartphone into a smart hub). Users do not need to know what this is because it is implemented so that they never have to think about where their MicroBots are paired to. As soon as it is paired to a smartphone, the MicroBot is virtually paired to all devices under the same Prota “account”.
So users see the same old MicroBot Push mobile app interface, but all MicroBots are actually paired to Prota Charles in the cloud. When they set up another smart device (a spare smartphone or a tablet or a Prota S/Pi) under the same Prota, MicroBots are also connected to the device, so that you can control them even when you are away from home.
When you come back, the MicroBots will be paired with your smartphone again if that’s more optimal. It’s automatic.
With Prota Charles, it is more convenient to connect MicroBots with other popular services like Amazon Alexa and IFTTT because Charles directly communicates with those services and knows the state of every device it manages under. It’s faster, more stable and far less error-prone.
The new Alexa skill is under certification. When it’s done, we will release it with Charles. You’re always welcome to join the beta program to try it out first!
“Made with Prota”
As we make Prota more usable and useful, ironically, users will not see it much for themselves. This is natural as users want to use MicroBots, not Prota, and it’s always better to use less number of technologies whenever possible.
We want to keep it simple, stupid. So we will not talk about Prota much from now on. It’s all about MicroBots, and anything we make will be made with Prota for sure.