WiFi and Bluetooth have their use cases, but both have certain demands on things like battery life and authentication that make them unsuitable for a lot of low-power use cases. They’re also quite limited in range. There are other standards out there a lot more suitable for low-power and large area work, and thankfully, LoRa is one of them. having created some LoRa pagers, [Moser] decided to head out and test their range.

Now, we’ve done range tests before. often this involves sending one party out with a radio while the other hangs back at base. Cellphones serve as a communications link while the two celebrations go back and forth, endlessly asking “Is it working now? Hang on, I’ll take a few steps back — what about now?”

It’s a painful way to do a range test. [Moser]’s method is much simpler; set a cellphone to log GPS position, and have the pager attempt to send the same data back to the base station. Then, go out for a drive, and compare the two traces. This method doesn’t just report directly range, either — it can be used to find good and bad spots for radio reception. It’s great when you live in an area full of radio obstructions where basic distance isn’t the only thing affecting your link.

Build details on the pagers are available, and you can learn a lot more about LoRa here. While you’re at it, check out the LoRa identify for a lot more cool develops and hacks.

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