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I'm a software programmer and I'm up to start a project of an embedded outdoor device which I will be able to control by any mobile phone.

My preferred approach is having the embedded device provide a HTTP webserver via Wi-Fi, so I wouldn't be required to create different apps for different phones.

What's the most easy way to add such Wi-Fi/HTTP support to a microcontroller? I guess the embedded device will have to provide a hotspot by itself so the phone can connect to it. But I'm not sure about this. Perhaps there are more easy ways?

Bluetooth doesn't seem appropriate here because of its limited reach.

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    \$\begingroup\$ A Raspberry Pi with WiFi dongle springs to mind. \$\endgroup\$
    – Majenko
    Nov 3, 2014 at 22:45
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    \$\begingroup\$ OK, I just read the specs. Class 1 Bluetooth devices can span 100m. But which class would a standard mobile phone have implemented? \$\endgroup\$
    – AxD
    Nov 3, 2014 at 23:14
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    \$\begingroup\$ Most consumer devices are class 2, 10 meters. \$\endgroup\$
    – Passerby
    Nov 3, 2014 at 23:22
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    \$\begingroup\$ Just finished a project very similar on a ti msp430. They also make a wifi module the cc3200 that supports ap mode so your phone could connect and has embedded stack. Think it's a slow arm on the inside. Wasn't too hard to add a simple http server to send commands and get feedback. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 3, 2014 at 23:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @SomeHardwareGuy: Your solutions sounds rather intriguing. Do you perhaps know of some ready-to-use board, with everything hardware related already in place? \$\endgroup\$
    – AxD
    Nov 4, 2014 at 0:14

3 Answers 3

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Why not try the TI wifi module, the CC3200, it supports ap mode so your phone could connect and has embedded stack. I think it's a slow arm on the inside. It wasn't too hard to add a simple http server to send commands and get feedback on the MSP430 so this should have more than enough power to do it.

It looks like the eval board comes with an HTTP server already in flash among other things. I looked at their downloadable SDK and it lists "http server" as one of the examples.

Here's their eval board: the CC3200-LAUNCHXL

enter image description here

Good luck with the project!

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This (or something similar) seems to be what you're looking for: http://www.connectone.com/?p=1 It has a WiFi-LAN bridge (so you can connect it to a router via LAN), an embedded web server and provides access via USB, SPI or UART for your microcontroller (or, in the case of USB, something like the RaspberryPi) to take control.

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  • \$\begingroup\$ After browsing through the documentation I'm not sure whether I can directly attach the WiFi module to something like the Raspberry Pi. Wouldn't it drastically increase costs to always buy an evaluation board? \$\endgroup\$
    – AxD
    Nov 4, 2014 at 0:02
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    \$\begingroup\$ If by "evaluation board" you meant the RaspberryPi, you could of course use a microcontroller via the UART or SPI interface. The product I linked is available as a chip as well. Obviously using the eval board would increase cost, yes. If you plan to produce high volumes of the product and don't have electronic design skills yourself, I would recommend hiring an additional person to handle the electronics development, but to get a prototype up and running, an evaluation board is probably the best solution. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 4, 2014 at 0:37
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    \$\begingroup\$ Also mind that even if you plan the prototype with an evalutation board, you still have the possibility to switch to a self-designed PCB (with the microcontroller on it as well) later on. \$\endgroup\$ Nov 4, 2014 at 0:38
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How about SparkCore ? Arduino Compatible & Plug n Play.

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