For over 20 years the team at Doodle Labs has been designing connectivity solutions at the cutting-edge of wireless technologies. From pioneering long-range WiFi in the late 90’s to bringing broadband communication for the Industrial Internet today, we’re constantly looking for solutions to the era’s most pressing connectivity problems.
Over this time, a central design principle has been to extend the latest RF and IP capabilities defined by IEEE 802.11 standards. 802.11 is unique in the world of standards in that it successfully joins rapid innovation and wide industry adoption. Its success is driven by large R&D investments that continuously bring wireless technology advances, and economies of scale that result in lower cost manufacturing. Doodle Labs takes the best of 802.11 standards and builds further proprietary improvements for Industrial IoT use cases.
802.11 defines hundreds of operating parameters (e.g. operating frequency) that can be tuned to optimize performance for different use cases and environments. WiFi Alliance, for example, focuses on short-range, indoor home and office environments and sets 802.11 operating profile accordingly (e.g. channels for interoperability). Doodle Labs has developed its own set of profiles within BII® (/Bee/, Broadband for Industrial Internet) that focus on highly demanding long-range, mobile, and outdoor use cases common in industrial applications.
In the late 90s when the initial release of IEEE 802.11b WiFi standard was gaining wide adoption for indoor office networking, Doodle Labs saw the need to extend connectivity over long distances. Our engineering team pioneered this capability, which would extend the internet access to remote/rural areas and laid the seed for the Wireless ISP industry.
Over the years, Doodle Labs’ approach to long-range communications has evolved. Where the focus was once on fixed nodes across rural environments, today’s rapidly growing unmanned vehicle and IoT applications are creating their own sets of requirements. Doodle Labs’ extensions to the 802.11 technology have led to the best long-range broadband performance on the market.
Our Drone customers, for example, regularly report the ability to stream 4K video from 15-20 km away. One notable customer paired Doodle Labs radios with high-gain antennas and built a 100 km wireless link.
Industrial and Federal OEMs often have a range of wireless spectrum they prefer to use, especially given the environmental noise at WiFi frequencies. The traditional issue with communication systems at licensed-band frequencies has been their limited customer base, which has limited the amount of development investments. In turn, the licensed band communication systems tend to be limited in performance, inflexible, and expensive.
Doodle Labs took the approach of using 802.11 standards and chipsets as a starting block rather than designing licensed-band systems from scratch. From there, super heterodyne technology, whose principles have been around since World War 2, is used to shift the operating frequency of traditional WiFi (2.4 and 5 GHz) to any frequency between 100 MHz and 6 GHz. We call this Prism-WiFi technology, which brings all the benefits of Long-Range WiFi protocol to licensed-band spectrum. The Prism-WiFi has earned NSA’s most demanding certifications and has been employed in numerous DoD Program of Records.
Over the years, the Prism-WiFi technology has matured and can provide high performance and cost-effective SDR solution. Doodle Labs engineers have a systematic way to optimize performance at target frequencies. Doodle Labs can achieve COFDM/MIMO operation in as small as 3 MHz channels. Small channel sizes allow broadband connectivity in unique channel plans and private spectrum.
As Industrial IoT applications have become more demanding, they require more sophisticated wireless Broadband capabilities. Instead of applying a single profile for different use cases, BII (Broadband for Industrial IoT) creates a technology profile best suited to each use case.
For example, rapidly moving mobile vehicles require low latency Command and Control communications, which are served by BII’s URLLC (ultra reliable low latency channel). As reliability is critical in most industrial applications, BII includes features such as MIMO, multipath, forward error correction, and ACK-retransmits.
In highly sensitive applications, the team has built over the air 256-bit AES encryption into the profile. Our radios are compliant with Federal NIST standards (e.g. FIPS 140-2 Level, NSA Type 1) and are deployed in numerous US Department of Defense programs of record.
Instead of reinventing the wheel, each of these features have been built by extending the best-of-the-breed technologies like 802.11 and widely used networking platforms like open-source Linux OpenWrt. The end result is state-of-the-art wireless communication capabilities.
The Smart Radio is designed to leverage the full capabilities of BII technology. It is a fully integrated router that contains Doodle Labs’ most advanced long-distance capabilities, utilizes Prism-WiFi technology to operate in frequencies from 100 MHz – 6 GHz, and features industrial networking optimizations as they are developed for new use cases.