Some time ago I seen the Intel Edison at a show. To be honest, when I got my hands on the this device I was excited to see it as well as excited to think that Intel was getting into the maker and #IOT space. As I was in the preliminary stages for deciding upon a platform for my product I decided to see if I could center my efforts on the Intel. With the Intel name backing a product I assumed that support as well as stability would be number 1.
Sad to say, I do not feel that is the case. Most of the time I spend fighting the machine and the OS to do what I consider simple stuff that devices like Arduino and Raspberry Pi handle very well and with a fantastic community for support. After getting to a point where I felt the major issues were addressed (spending way more time then I should have.) I started building out my software and testing.
The results have left me and my company to make the hard choice and move away from utilizing the Edison. It seems that outside the few people here the device is just not supported by Intel. Yes, I know peole from Intel are here and do try to answer, it is not them I take issue with. I take issue with Management for allowing this product to die. Important questions don't ever get fully answered. Good example is the operating temperature, an important thing to consider when building #IOT devices. A question from 1 1/5 years ago should have been answered and addressed, or we should have been told the specs in the product brief is the operating temp.
So what was the final straw for me and my product line?
After fixing the issue of slow Wifi performance, I left my code running after about one day the device just simply dropped its network connection, I know the device was still functional because I was still able to use the serial console. Bringing the interface up and down did not fix it, only a reboot of the device did. Thinking it might be an issue with code, I stopped execution, and let the device sit, after about 1 day again it lost connection. How am I to contend with that?
Yes, I am sure I can spend some time to figure it out, but why? I should not have to, other products I have used are stable, have a fantastic support structure. I do not wish to spend my time fighting issues with the device, it distracts me from getting my product to market. In the end, I moved my code to a Raspberry Pi 3 and to Arduinos and it has been solid as a rock and has all the same capabilities, but how cool would it have been to slap a powered by Intel sticker on the devices I am bringing to market.
I did enjoy the device, it will hold a place on my workbench for some time. I just do not see it as anything more then a nice looking conversation piece about what could have been. If anyone from Intel is reading this, thank you for creating a truly interesting product. I will keep my eyes open to see if some of the issues have been addressed. I am sure I will still play with the device, and one day I hope to see that the issue around this device have been resolved. When that day comes, I will examine this again.
It is a sad day that I must walk away from a bit of hardware that I found truly exciting.
Robert E. Winslow