Postifier – A Connected Mailbox

Figuring out, when the mailman arrived and delivered a few envelopes in the mailbox is a tricky matter. This project involved figuring out an automated solution to this problem. The client business, which was a start-up organization, approached us with the idea, and there we were – Devoting our best men to carve out a reliable solution for intimating people when emails arrive in their mailboxes!

AIM OF THE PROJECT

The precise goal of the project was to make something, a device may be, and that stays in people’s mailboxes. This device is supposed to detect motion (opening of the box and tucking in of envelopes and letters). Further, after detecting the arrival of the mail, this device was somehow supposed to communicate with the people living inside the house and notify them that mail has arrived. It was supposed to involve a short distance communication pattern with robust motion sensing capability.

THE CHALLENGE

Since we worked on this project, commence to completion, we faced quite a number of hiccups. We started with inducing BTLE into a small battery-run device and integrating it with a mobile-compatible application that would constantly run in the background. Testing and validating device for its hardware and functionality, while ensuring that battery consumption was minimal, was a crucial phase.

FEATURES
  • Support for mobile platforms – Android & iOS
  • Bluetooth-based connectivity
  • Small sized hardware device
  • 25 meters of range
  • Connectivity with up to 3 mobile phones
  • BTLE based small form factor device that fits in the mailbox (post box)
  • Detects the arrival of emails in the mailbox & sends alert to mobile phone
  • Helps user visit the mailbox only when there is mail
  • Based on TI’s BT design – CC2541 chip
  • Battery lasts for more than 6 months
  • The app runs in background & notifies the user only when there is mail
VOLANSYS’ ROLE

We helped the customer realize the product from the concept by doing an initial prototype followed by the production. The development life cycle of the product included phases like design and development of the firmware, designing and developing an application that is absolutely compatible with all mobile platforms, prototyping, production and post-release maintenance support.

We ensured that the battery that was fueling this device lasted for a minimum of 6 months, eradicating the need to replace batteries way too frequently.

Following list shows our contribution:

  • Pro Complete Product design and development from concept to market launch
  • BTLE Find Me and Alert profile in hardware board as Peripheral
  • Application with BTLE Central role on Android and iOS platforms
  • Design & development of the CC2541 firmware
  • Quick prototyping, including hardware box
  • Functional & system validation for End to End flow
  • Mechanical & hardware design using CAD
  • Provide post-release support & maintenance, production