Long-Term Hardware Availability for Industrial/Commercial/Public Projects at Scale

I’d love to hear the thoughts from Particle and opinions from Community Members on the subject of Long Term Particle Hardware Availability when planning an Industrial or Commercial IoT product.

To me, this area tends to deviate from the Consumer or End User Market substantially.
I completely understand the need and the benefits from Releasing New Hardware Products.
That’s how the IoT Industry grows and continues to open up new possibilities.

To help illustrate the subject, a great example is the market for something that’s important to everyone on this Forum (weather you realize it or not): Public Works.
Specifically, Drinking Water and Wastewater services. We’ve seen a lot of growth in SCADA & IoT in this industry over the last 15 years, but the prices haven’t seemed to re-align considering the wild growth in the Market (just from my experience in the South US).
For example: Rural Water Associations, Towns and Cities can still spend $15,000 USD each for a simple device to remotely monitor the control panel for a Water Well or Sewage Pump Station. Even very small towns can have dozens of these locations that would benefit from an affordable IoT device.

One obvious answer is a Boron on LTS. I’ve enjoyed watching the Boron Firmware mature in the last 5 years. Many people here know that I’m a big Boron Fan.
[Warning: the following is just a personal opinion] But I didn’t consider the Boron a viable option for an Industrial Product at Scale for the first 3+ years, as the kinks were being worked out.

So now we have a viable cellular IoT Device in the Boron-Based SKU’s that can fill this role.
But will the Boron-Based SKU’s (or a compatible/swappable replacement) be available in 10 years?
When a Client spends $ Six figures on an IoT Project across their entire Service Area, we have to KNOW that product will be available to add new locations, and service existing locations for years to come.

I guess the simple question is, will/do we have a Hardware LTS line like the OS side ?

(Side Note) I should also say that I have no interest in personally or professionally selling a Product Line.
However, I would be glad to help someone enter this Market with an affordable Particle based Product.

Thanks in Advance for your comments.
I posted this in the BrainStorming Catagory…so there are no Right or Wrong opinions here :slight_smile:


For long-term compatibility we recommend the B Series SoM form-factor, not the Boron form-factor.

The size of the Boron module currently leads to situations like there not being a LTE Cat 1 module because the EG91-E/EX does not fit within the bounds of a Feather module.

Independent of Particle, there’s also the situation with cellular compatibility. We have no control over when the carriers sunset certain cellular technologies. While none have yet announced sunsetting of LTE Cat 1 or LTE Cat M1, no one know what will happen in 10 years.

For cellular products, in particular, the M.2 form-factor (B SoM) is the best place to be. Newer cellular modules are likely to be in that form-factor, not Feather (Boron).


That’s what I was thinking with “Boron-Based SKU’s”.
Thanks for the insight, clarification, and correction.

Thanks for adding this! Do you have any real concerns with LTE Cat M1 being phased out? I was under the impression LTE Cat M1 was a safe (longterm) route for IoT.

I do believe LTE Cat M1 to be safe. It’s effectively a subset of LTE Cat 1, so there would be no advantage of removing support for it for most carriers until 4G/LTE is sunset, which I don’t see any indication of happening any time soon.