IoT Platform allows devices to connect to it directly, or be mounted as sub-devices to gateways that connect to IoT Platform.

Gateways and devices

When you create a product, you must select a node type for the devices of the product. Currently, IoT Platform supports two node types, Device and Gateway.

  • Device: Devices of this node type cannot be mounted with sub-devices, but can be connected directly to the IoT Platform or be mounted as sub-devices to gateways.
  • Gateway: Devices of this node type can connect to IoT Platform directly and can be mounted with sub-devices. Gateways are then used to manage sub-devices, maintain topological relationships with sub-devices, and synchronize these topological relationships to IoT Platform.

The topological relationship between a gateway and its sub-devices is shown in the following figure:

Connect gateways and sub-devices to IoT Platform

Once a gateway has been connected to IoT Platform, the gateway will synchronize its topological relationships with its sub-devices to IoT Platform. A gateway supports device authentication, message reporting, instruction receiving, and other communications with IoT Platform for all its sub-devices. That is, sub-devices are managed by their corresponding gateway.

  1. Develop the gateway and connect the gateway to Iot Platform.

    For more information about how to connect gateways to IoT Platform, see Link Kit SDK.

  2. You can connect sub-devices to IoT Platform using either of the following two methods:
    • The Unique-certificate-per-device authentication method. This method requires you to install the device certificates (namely, the ProductKey, DeviceName, and DeviceSecret) in the physical sub-devices, and then connect the sub-devices to IoT Platform.
    • The Unique-certificate-per-product authentication method. This method requires you to enable Dynamic Registration on the product details page and register devices in the IoT Platform console. Then, when a physical sub-device is being connected, the gateway will initiate a connection request to IoT Platform for the sub-device. IoT Platform then verifies the sub-device information. If the verification passes, IoT Platform will assign the DeviceSecret to the sub-device. The sub-device then receives all the required information (namely, the ProductKey, DeviceName, and DeviceSecret) to successfully connect to IoT Platform.