The IOTile Companion mobile app is built to work both with and without internet connectivity. In "online mode", when your smartphone has internet access, there are no limitations to functionality. If all of your IOTile PODs are installed in regions where you have cellular service or WiFi connectivity, then you will never need 'offline mode.'
If, on the other hand, you have installations where cellular signal is spotty or perhaps non-existent, 'offline mode' is an essential ingredient to allow for smooth and robust data collection. This is how it works:
- Make sure to setup your project and all devices in it while you still have internet connectivity.
- Group all devices that you want to access offline into a single project and consider giving it a memorable name
- Example: Field Water Meters (For Offline Mode)
- On the mobile app, make sure this project is selected as your Active Project and that you select 'Sync Now' when opening the project.
- You can now go and interact with any of the devices in your Active Project without internet connectivity both to see real time readings and to collect data into your mobile for upload when your return to areas with internet connectivity.
Offline Mode FAQ
Q: Does the mobile app have to stay open?
A: No, after setting up (steps 1-3), you can close the mobile app and it will still work in offline mode, as long as you don't change your active project or logout.
Q: How will the data I collect be uploaded later?
A: When you have internet connectivity again, you can either (a) click on that specific device and click the 'Upload' button or (b) select project-wide settings and select 'Upload All Data', which will upload the data for every device in that project together.
Q: I can't find the settings menus in offline mode. Where did they go?
A: Both the project-level settings and device-level settings are hidden when you do not have internet access since it would not work to configure the whole system. As soon as you have internet access again, the settings icons will reappear.
Q: Do I have to configure my IOTile device at home before installing it in the field?
A: Yes, if your smart phone has no internet connectivity at the installation site, you should configure the device and project (step 1) before you go out and install it.
Q: How do you know that the data was collected correctly and it didn't get lost somewhere?
A: We have built a sophisticated data-robustness system that passes checks and confirmations from the cloud to your mobile device to the IOTile POD device and back. These checks work to help ensure that the complete record of data from the device makes it to your online web account for safe keeping.