Spark Core / UPS & GSM Module support


For a project besides using the Spark Core I have two extra requirements:

    1. In case of a power cut there need to be some power-backup-mechanism (UPS) that can power the Spark Core (+see question 2 a GSM module) during the power cut (maximum 4hrs is ok)? If yes, what are the specs for such an UPS and eventual recommended products?
    1. Can I use a GSM module (for sending SMSs and transferring data over 3G or GPRS) with the Spark Core; if yes which one(s) are fully supported?

Many thanks.

For a UPS, you can use a USB battery pack like they sell for charging phones. You can power the Core from it while it is plugged into a power supply and then if the power goes out it will continue to run. I have a 2200 mAh battery that will power the Core itself for over 4 hours. You can get 10000 mAh batteries on Amazon for about $20.

For a cellular connection, I just used a MiFi hotspot. You can use it to connect the Core to the internet like you normally would and then if you want to send an SMS, you can use a service like Nexmo to send it through the internet. They also have batteries in them, so they have their own UPS built in. You can usually find a used one on eBay for less than the cost of a GSM module.


@ih57452 thanks for the answer.

@ih57452 I am also considering to use a Mifi hotspot for my spark cores.
What is the data consumption of the cores without custom api calls, meaning just to hold the connection to the spark cloud ? I’m trying to estimate the monthly data plan needed for the Mifi…
Thank you

The most data I’ve used in a month so far is 44 MB. That’s with my core publishing a few events per hour and updating the firmware on it several times. I think updating the firmware used most of that data. It doesn’t use much when it’s just sitting idle, but I don’t know exactly how much.

@ih57452: Which battery pack do you have? I have a couple and all of them refuse to charge the phone / power the outgoing usb when they themselves are being charged

The one I have is very similar to this one. Mine only has a 2200 mAh capacity and it’s no longer available on Amazon, but it is the same manufacturer and it looks identical to this one.