XPLR-IOT-1: Quick start guide


The XPLR-IOT-1 explorer development platform provides developers with a single device to enable evaluation of the different u-blox product centers: short range, cellular, positioning, and services. A rechargeable battery allows portable operation.

The NORA-B106 module is the main CPU with two Arm Cortex M33 cores and provides Bluetooth LE. UARTs connect each of the other technologies – NINA-B156 for Wi-Fi, SARA-R510S for cellular, and MAX-M10S for GNSS. Internet access over cellular or Wi-Fi connect to Thingstream’s MQTT broker. An NFC antenna provides NFC tag capability.

A USB connection provides UART connections to each of the modules. USB is also connected directly to the NORA-B1 and SARA-R5. For quick verification or configuration of the modules, the respective evaluation applications – s-center, c-center, and u-center – may be used when NORA-B1 is not active.

XPLR-IOT-1 includes sensors for pressure, temperature, humidity, movement, and ambient light. A Qwiic® connect system allows connection of other I2C devices.

The pre-loaded firmware establishes internet connectivity, activates the sensors, and sends the sensor data over MQTT messages through Thingstream. Data can then be formatted and sent to a dashboard based on Node-RED.

Getting started

USB connection

A USB connection to a host PC is used for charging the internal battery and for configuring XPLR-IOT-1.

Before plugging in XPLR-IOT-1 the first time, install the USB-UART device drivers.

1. Download the device drivers

2. Unzip the file to a convenient location.

3. Run the installer for your operating system.

4. Connect XPLR-IOT-1 to a host PC using a USB A to micro-B cable.

5. Turn on XPLR-IOT-1. Four virtual COM ports (VCP) will enumerate.

6. Open Device Manager to view the installed ports.

In this section

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  • Be sure to fully charge the battery, especially on the first use.

COM ports are assigned according to the Interface number:

  • NORA-B106 is assigned to Interface 0 with a default baud rate of 115,200 bps.

  • SARA-R510S is assigned to Interface 1 with a default baud rate of 115,200 bps.

  • NINA-W156 is assigned to Interface 2 with a default baud rate of 115,200 bps.

  • MAX-M10S is assigned to Interface 3 with a default baud rate of 9,600 bps.

COM port assignments differ among host PCs. Using the image above as an example, NORA-B106 on interface 0 is assigned to COM8.

Initial configuration

Before XPLR-IOT-1 can send messages to Thingstream, a Wi-Fi or cellular connection must be established, and appropriate things created on the Thingstream platform.

Wi-Fi - IP thing

  1. Create an IP thing on the Thingstream Platform.

  2. Display the IP thing's credentials page. Keep this page available.

  3. Open a terminal program, such as TeraTerm, and connect it to the NORA-B106 on Interface 0 as noted in the image above.

  4. Enter the IP Thing credentials