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Why LoRaWAN is a Must-have for Automated Temperature Monitoring


In the market for an automated temperature monitoring system? It's pretty easy to find a variety of WiFi and Bluetooth-powered temperature sensors online.


While affordable, these types of sensors only work well for personal home usage.


However, for everyone who works with commercial walk-ins, industrial freezers, and other industry-grade refrigeration—you’ll need something more robust.


This begs several questions:

Can your phone reliably and consistently receive WiFi or Bluetooth signals in your walk-in? Can you trust a sensor that doesn't maintain a consistent connection during potentially critical moments?


So, what makes an automated temperature monitoring system ‘robust’ and ‘reliable’? 


Let’s break down everything you need to know before buying your first (or next) monitoring platform.


Consistent uptime and connectivity are crucial

When your sensors are offline, you’ll miss out on critical data and urgent alerts. WiFi and Bluetooth are susceptible to these issues, as they struggle with poor connectivity in dense environments.


Commercial refrigeration units with multiple layers of steel and insulation make it especially difficult for signals to maintain consistent connectivity.


To better understand the limitations of WiFI and Bluetooth, let’s have a quick look at these two very familiar connection types.


What is WiFi?

Now considered a common need in human lives, WiFi is pretty much everywhere these days. But what exactly is it, and how does it work?


WiFi stands for Wireless Fidelity, and it functions by sending radio waves between devices. WiFi is unique because it relies on a centralized router that can connect to multiple devices at once.


WiFi became a popular choice for use in temperature sensors because… well, it’s simply everywhere. Worldwide, 60% of people use WiFi to connect to the internet, with 50% of those users browsing via mobile devices. 


Unfortunately, WiFi sensors are heavily hindered in commercial buildings and cease functionality without a consistent electrical connection.


So if there’s a power interruption, your WiFi goes bye-bye.


Additionally, the strength of your internet signal impacts the performance of your WiFi systems. If you were to use WiFi in a rural or isolated region or a building containing WiFi-hindering materials (such as thick steel walls), you would experience poor connection issues.


Here’s a summary of the pros and cons of relying on WiFI-powered temperature sensors:



  • Can upload large amounts of data quickly with extraordinary bandwidth


  • Connections are available at a distance



  • Can't function without power


  • Requires an internet connection

That’s your everyday WiFi. How about Bluetooth?


What is Bluetooth? 

In contrast to WiFi, Bluetooth sends signals directly between two individual devices without the need for a centralized router.  


As mobile device usage increased, Bluetooth became an excellent option for connecting them with other devices like speakers or headphones that previously relied on wires and cables.


Bluetooth doesn’t require an internet connection to send signals, making it usable almost anywhere. Additionally, Bluetooth doesn’t require a wired electrical connection,  enabling Bluetooth-enabled devices to operate for as long as their internal battery lasts.


On the contrary, Bluetooth devices can sometimes interfere with each other, causing a loss of connection.


The other drawback of Bluetooth is the relatively short range that the signal travels. In many commercial devices, connectivity may wane over several feet.


Here’s a summary of the pros and cons of relying on Bluetooth-powered temperature sensors:



  • Doesn't require constant power


  • Doesn't require an internet connection



  • Has trouble transmitting signals over long distances or through metal


  • Is unreliable in settings with many devices


With WiFi and Bluetooth-powered monitoring devices out of the question, what sort of connection type should you be looking for?




What is LoRaWAN?

Short for Long-Range Wide Area Network, it’s a signal code used within the Internet of Things (IoT) to transmit data from one device to another. 


LoRaWAN sensors use a long-range, low-power radio signal to transmit data from sensors to a data-processing hub.


Turns out, this type of signal can easily penetrate thick walls and doors, such as those found in walk-ins, coolers, freezers, and low-boys.


This makes the LoRaWAN connection more robust and reliable in busy and dense restaurant environments.


First time hearing about LoRaWAN? While this application of LoRaWAN is relatively new, the technology itself isn’t. Its integration into IoT technology began at the dawn of the 2010s, and its reputation has been building ever since. 


Here’s a summary of the pros and cons of using LoRaWAN-powered temperature monitoring devices:



  • Doesn’t require a wired electrical connection or WiFi to operate


  • Able to function consistently in areas with physical, signal-dampening obstructions



  • Every location requires a hub to transmit sensor signals


  • Low bandwidth restricts the amount of data transmitted


Sure, all the connection types we mentioned above have their fair share of pros and cons, but LoRaWAN still has an edge over WiFi and Bluetooth—it still functions at full capacity in dense restaurant environments.


How LoRaWAN compares to WiFi and Bluetooth

When comparing temperature monitoring systems, consider the qualities of your restaurant and its specific needs.


For restaurants with open kitchens and fewer electronic devices, Bluetooth is still a good option.


Facilities in rural areas should rule out WiFi since you’ll need a stable and consistent internet connection.


For multi-use buildings with significant infrastructure, they benefit from LoRaWAN due to their reliability in maintaining connection even through dense materials.


WiFi and Bluetooth, while more common and widespread, still rely on goldilocks-level conditions to not just function, but function reliably.


This is why LoRaWAN should take the top spot in your list of temperature monitoring criteria.


Where can you start looking for LoRaWAN-powered devices?

GlacierGrid's LoRaWAN-powered remote monitoring system is the premier choice for commercial refrigeration with unparalleled range and connectivity.


We designed our platform to provide 99% uptime in commercial environments—ensuring you get critical data whenever and wherever you need it.


So, why choose GlacierGrid Monitoring?


Connection reaches more than 1,200 feet 

Yes, even through thick walls, your sensor will stay connected to your hub where critical data is collected. This reliable range allows us to keep managers and operators continually informed.

Critical data is thoroughly protected

Our LoRaWAN sensors offer military-grade data security, helping to protect your restaurant from hacks and data mining.

Continuous data collection

Our proprietary software records your equipment continuously. In the event of a power outage, your system will still record temperature data during the outage. You can then view this data once power is restored.

Here’s a quote that summarizes LoRaWAN’s role in revolutionizing temperature monitoring technology:


“With the integration of LoRaWAN into our product suite, we are able to provide exceptional connectivity in dense, noisy, chaotic environments where other wireless devices have struggled or failed.”

—Andrew Hager, CTO of GlacierGrid

Be a part of the temperature monitoring revolution

If you’re looking for a reliable and robust temperature monitoring system—try GlacierGrid now!