What’s in a CRM?

So you work in a startup. You’ve got an office, some staff and paying customers. Clients are rolling in and your sales team is furiously answering and making calls to get deals locked down. Generally things are going pretty well, but that spreadsheet you made all those months ago to record your first ever deal has metastasized into an unruly monster, sprouting extra tabs, sheets and links. It’s out of control, a mutant that has gone far beyond those first few neat and tidy tables. It’s time for a CRM system.

So what is a CRM system? CRM stands for Customer Relationship Management and a CRM system is a tool companies use to do just that, from managing their contacts and sales pipeline, to forecasting future revenue streams and tracking the performance of individual sales professionals. There are so many CRM tools available that it’s hard to know which to choose. Options range from the established and popular Salesforce, to midsized alternatives like SurgarCRM, and newer, smaller, companies such as close.io, Base and Nimble.  OpenSignal recently made the jump to a CRM tool so we thought we’d share our stories of how we navigated the sea of possibilities.

  1. Ask around

First port of call was asking our co-workers, friends and other startups for recommendations. Reviews ranged, but the general consensus was that Salesforce is clunky and complicated but hugely flexible, and everyone ‘ends up using it eventually’, whereas tools like Base and Close.io are cool with nice UIs, ‘get’ startups, and are far easier to use. That helped us narrow it down to those three to investigate.

  1. Go online and check reviews

The next step was to check out what the Wider World thought. There are plenty of websites that give you advice on how to pick CRMs or review individual systems, such as reviews.com and Forbes. Quora had some helpful hints, but also amusingly devolved into a tete-a-tete between CRM system co-founders, like this one between Base and Close.io. Generally reviews confirmed the recommendations we’d heard, that Salesforce is the bigger player by far but requires a significant time investment in terms of learning to use the software, whereas Close.io and Base are much more intuitive and simple to use.

  1. Get the whole sales team on board

Moving to a CRM requires considerable time investment up front to make sure that everyone knows how to use it properly. We involved our whole sales team from the beginning, discussing the process of making a sale and how this could be supported by, and recorded in, a system that minimized burdensome data entry while optimizing data analysis and learning. Each person reviewed the three CRM tools and everyone committed to putting in the time to learn the new system up front, whatever the decision turned out to be.

  1. Free trials

We signed up to free trials for the CRM systems and created profiles for everyone in the sales team to try them out.  We wanted to upload our contacts and current deals into each in order to test out how we could really use them. Before jumping in to test out each system we took time to figure out what we wanted the CRM for. Running quick reports for board meetings was key; being able to track our sales process quickly and efficiently was another priority.

We needed technical support from all of the CRM systems to be able to import our data, with varying levels of success. Close.io was first off the mark with uploading everything, although we had trouble with currencies since their system only understood dollars. Base was next, after I responded to a thank-you-for-signing-up-email from the CEO. However not all of the data was uploaded, such as the deal values, making it hard to test out what reports we could build. Uploading to Salesforce was the most complicated and required submitting a case number to their help desk. However, once a technical person was available, their support was stellar and they were able to upload all the data – confirming the assumption that they have great flexibility.  The whole sales team was also inundated with emails and sales calls from all three, so be warned – on sign up you’ll be hearing from a CRM rep!

The Decision

Though Salesforce is great for functionality, we decided we didn’t need all the bells and whistles it offers just yet, leaving us with Base and Close.io to choose from. These options were also fairly similar in terms of tracking calls, emails and providing analytics. In the end, despite it being pricier, Close.io pipped Base to the post. We went with it because of the slick UI, the flexible reporting and the useful native desktop app (apparently a mobile app is in the pipeline, which Base and Salesforce already have). Ultimately, we’ll have to keep testing and adapting as we go to see how well this particular CRM tool works for us, but hopefully taking the time to evaluate all the options up front will pay off and we can forever bid farewell to mammoth spreadsheets!

 

Posted in Startups | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Under Pressure: Bringing WeatherSignal to the iPhone

Alright, stop. It’s time to collaborate and listen, OpenSignal are back with a brand new invention. We’re bringing WeatherSignal to the iPhone let that news grab a hold of you tightly, we’ve been working on it hard both daily and nightly. Will we ever stop? Yes, you know it, and now we can show it to all you iPhone users who have been clamouring for a version. WeatherSignal for Android is a year old, but Apple gave us new tools so it’s time to go big and bold. The app’s a barometer that sits in your pocket, if you haven’t tried it yet then you’d better not knock it, it’s a part of our wider weather crowdsourcing project.

We worked hard to get it perfect, as anything less than the best is a felony, we want you to love it not leave it, we want you to stay, glued to our app without ever needing to stray. It will get better the more you do it, we need you to share your data so we can sift through it – making forecasts better in the long run, using WeatherSignal to make meteorology fun.

We’re the first company to build an app that makes use of the iPhone 6 and 6+ barometers for science, we were quick to this point, absolutely no faking – cooking the competition like a pound of bacon. We’re on a roll as a team, no time to go solo, rollin’ with WeatherSignal 1.0 – our iPhones out as the pressure’s getting low – the users on standby, waiting just to say hi, did we stop? Of course and listened to their feedback, making sure that we were on the right track.

So now the app is out, first of its kind, WeatherSignal’s on the scene in case you didn’t know it (you really should have done by now, come on, this is the fourth paragraph yo). It’s beautifully formed – our designer Daniil’s got a style like a chemical spill, he draws lines you can vision and feel. He conducted and formed it, it’s a hell of a concept, he’s drawn it so fast other designers say ‘damn’ – if this app was a drug we’d sell it by the gram. So yes that’s the news, we’ve launched the app – come on iPhone users, get with it, where you at?

No pressure apps for the iPhone? That’s a pretty big problem – but yo, we solved it – check out the app before Pau Perez evolves it.

Word.

Photo credit: wikimedia commons
Posted in WeatherSignal | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

iPhone Metamorphosis

The most recent iterations of the iPhone bring with them some significant changes to the Apple ecosystem. Every year we release a report into the state of Android fragmentation, a report that heavily emphasises the difference between Android and iOS in terms of the overall homogeneity of the market. We are always interested in how devices in the same series change over time, and what trends are visible – for instance, with the Samsung Galaxy series, we’ve seen the progressive addition of sensors as a significant trend. For the iPhone series, no such clear-cut developmental trend emerges. However, it’s still interesting to compare the various iPhone versions to see how they stack-up for some of the less conventional stats they can be compared for:

Weight (grams)

Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 17.44.53

Interestingly, despite the well-publicised skinniness of the iPhone6+, it is actually heavier than previous models. Apple have bowed to the trend of increasing screen size and this is represented by a corresponding increase in device-weight.

Total Pixels

Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 17.43.42

While total pixels do not correspond necessarily to higher pixel density (as that obviously depends on screen area), the large jump in total pixels represents the first rise in pixel density on an iPhone since the arrival of the iPhone 4. From the iPhone 4 to the iPhone 6 dpi remained constant at 326 but jumped up to 401 with the iPhone 6+.

CPU Speed

Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 17.30.35

This is the one area where iPhones have seen a clear and steady progression, although improvements in CPU speed have slowed somewhat since the release of the 5. During earlier iterations of the iPhone, however, it can be seen that processor improvement was an important area of focus.

Bendability

Screen Shot 2014-09-25 at 17.22.40

With Apple building a major marketing campaign around the ability of the user to manipulate their device to suit the curvature of their thigh, bendability is obviously an important point of comparison between various iPhone generations. As can be seen, Apple have gone for a bold 0-60 approach; going from no bendability to full bendability between the iPhone 6 and the iPhone 6+. Expect the iPhone 7 to be built entirely from silly putty.

Posted in Mobile Trends | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

The Ladder of Possibilities

“Nothing is impossible” is a curious phrase. Despite its patent falsehood it is rarely challenged. A short Levenshtein distance away is “This is not impossible”, which is far more likely to hit the mark of truth and is usually what is meant in the first place. So why make such a unspecific and false assertion?

By using “nothing”, the phrase encourages us to think in general terms. It invites us to consider cases beyond the problem at hand – past occasions when we’ve considered something wouldn’t happen and then it did. This is why the phrase has currency, but it doesn’t stop it from being a tremendous cop-out, cutting short discussion of all the intricate details that determine whether things do or do not happen.

There is a second reason the phrase is tolerated: to challenge it is considered negative, even defeatist. But what can be defeatist about accepting, for instance, that you can’t have square circles, or that 2 will never be a larger number than 3?

The notion of impossibility is less appetising than possibility. Even those of use who study philosophy may only ever encounter impossibility in one of its forms: logical impossibility, the type of impossibility that forbids the existence of square circles and 4-sided triangles. Evidently this form is distant from what we normally mean when talk about possibility, it is a distillation of the everyday meaning, too potent for prolonged consumption, though an occasional sip may serve you well.

There is a richer way of thinking of possibility, introduced to me my philosophy tutor Bill Newton-Smith several years ago: why not consider possibility as having different grades? After all it’s impossible to download OpenSignal on Windows Phone at the moment, because we haven’t built it for that platform yet (sorry!) but this is not the same sort of possibility that prevents parallel lines from meeting. It’s also impossible for a person to jump from the earth to the moon (at least without the aid for some serious equipment), and this seems somewhat more impossible than downloading OpenSignal for Windows Phone (but, again, less impossible than the meeting of parallel lines).

It is helpful to think of a ladder of different grades of possibility, with each level reached new limits are encountered. Understanding this will give you a sharper sense of what can be done.

Here are a few candidate rungs for a Ladder of Possibilities:

  • Logical possibility, friend to philosophers, the top rung.
  • Physical possibility, “physical” here refers to physics, not human capabilities. This is the sort of impossibility that prevents matter or information travelling faster than the speed of light.
  • Technological possibility, allowed by current technology or technology that, to the best of our knowledge, could be produced.
  • Economic possibility, possible within the current global economic system.
  • Just-not-there impossible, “it is impossible to download WeatherSignal version 3.00”, she sobbed, “those misdirected developers at OpenSignal Inc. have spent too much time writing blog posts again”.


  • You can think of other rungs as well – for example: impossible given the time you have available, or your current skill level.

    With the exception of logical possibility, all of these type of possibility are either flexible, or have boundaries that are unknown. For instance, while we have extremely good reason to believe that nothing can travel faster than light, perhaps our current physics will be overthrown. This does not mean there do not exist things that are truly physically impossible, it just means we can’t be 100% certain what those things are. Technological possibility is even more contingent, it is not simply a case of not knowing where the borders are but of frontiers that are actively being challenged.

    Note the hierarchy of the structure, something can’t be technologically impossible and yet just-not-there possible, likewise things can’t be physically impossible but technologically possible. Impossibility trickles down, possibility does not trickle up.

    So maybe when people utter that infuriating refrain, nothing is impossible, perhaps they mean things like, “Sure, at one level this impossible – you just don’t know how to code right now, so how’re you going to build a ten million node sensor network? But, I mean, it could happen – after all there are billion Android phones out there, so get past that first rung and it can be done.”

    The OpenSignal Sensor Library
    Knowing where limits lie – and how you can move them – is much more useful than a blanket denial of their existence. This is one of the reasons why we’ve built the OpenSignal sensor library – by looking at the quantity of sensors in mobile devices right now (everything from BLE, to hygrometers, to accelerometers) it’s possible to dream realistically about the type of apps we can build.

    Maybe, just maybe, nothing is impossible is more subtle than I give it credit, maybe it taps into our innate awareness of different levels of what can be done, maybe I’m even wrong to accuse it of being a cop-out, after all … nothing is impossible.

    Posted in Philosophy, Sensors | 1 Comment

    State of US Wi-Fi Report

    One of the many interesting datasets collected from users of the OpenSignal app is a large volume of Wi-Fi speedtests. Until now we have rarely looked at our Wi-Fi data for reports or blog posts, but since Wi-Fi is a huge part of our coverage-mapping project, we felt that it was time to dive in and start investigating.

    We found some pretty cool insights – including that there is a strong correlation between the cost of a hotel room and the speed of Wi-Fi that you can expect from that hotel. We plotted this using cheapest room price data from 2012, against our average speeds for the specific hotel SSID’s (which weren’t always easy to find!).

    Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 17.56.05
    We also discovered that Starbucks’ switch from AT&T Wi-Fi to Google has brought about an 80% increase in speeds – great news for anyone who spends far too much time with their laptop in starbucks!

    Screen Shot 2014-08-06 at 17.56.00

    Click through to see the rest of the report, including the answer to the question ‘who has faster Wi-Fi, McDonalds or BestBuy?’

    Posted in Reports | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

    The Next Chapter

    Today we are excited to announce we’ve raised a $4million Series A investment led by Qualcomm Incorporated, through its venture investment group, Qualcomm Ventures. As we’ve got to know Qualcomm over the past few years it’s become clear that they are the right partner for the next stage of the OpenSignal journey, as not only are they leaders in the wireless industry but they also share our belief in the potential of sensor networks and crowdsourcing.  We’re looking forward to exploring this burgeoning field together and happy to say that O’Reilly AlphaTech Ventures and Passion Capital are also participating in the round.

    Our core mission remains the same: Consumers around the world spend more than a trillion dollars every year on wireless contracts/plans and although network quality is the single most important factor1 for them, there has never been a source of independent and unbiased data they can rely on.  Our goal is to upend the information balance in this industry and provide consumers with accurate data so they can choose the operator that will provide the best coverage for them.  This increased transparency should also lead to more competition in the wireless industry and encourage operators to invest more in providing better coverage and performance – and we’re already working with operators on every continent to help them improve their service by leveraging our data.

    sensor_creep_light

    The increasing number of sensors in successive generations of mobile devices

    However, in building a sensor network for wireless signal we’ve become fascinated by the possibilities that now exist with the explosion in sensors on mobile devices that can measure anything from your location to the atmospheric humidity.  The next generation of mobile devices will extend this to include things like air quality, radiation and 3D vision sensors to name just a few and with 2 billion smartphones now in circulation there is an enormous opportunity to tap into these to build sensor networks at a scale that has not been previously possible.  In addition to growing the OpenSignal sensor network we’ll continue to experiment with WeatherSignal, our sensor network for the weather, and building new networks that tap into entirely new sensors – watch this space!

    We’ll be using the funding primarily for growing the OpenSignal team and are particularly looking for people that like data as much as we do, whether it’s mining datasets for hidden correlations, telling stories with intuitive visualisations or building a scalable pipeline for handling large volumes of data. If that sounds like you then we’d love to hear from you.

     

    Read more on the Qualcomm Ventures website.

     

    [1] “OfCom Consumer Experience Report 2013”: 9.1.4 Poor coverage and Quality of Service are the two most important factors mobile consumers complain about.

    Posted in Press, Sensors, Team, WeatherSignal | 10 Comments

    OpenSignal for iOS: The Remake

    Last week we released a new version of the OpenSignal app for iOS. This version had been in the works for months, with a complete overhaul of both the design and functionality – to produce something that would better fit the design schematic of iOS7 and bring the app’s functionality up to equivalence with the Android version of OpenSignal.

    The first few days after the launch have been a great success. We got great press from The Next Web and Slashgear, were featured by Apple in the App Store in 91 countries worldwide and have already seen great engagement from users making use of the new sharing options – with lots of speed tests popping up on twitter. To give you an idea of how quickly we saw app use spreading over the world – this graphic was whipped up by our developer Pau, showing all the places we’d received data from users of the new version from within only the first 6 hours of launch:

    ios app locations
    For those of you have yet to download the new version, it is drastically different from the previous version – with there being three main areas of differentiation.

    1) Improvements to user contribution: we make use of enhanced permissions in iOS 7 to bring up user sharing to a level similar to that of the Android app. This was a much-requested feature by our users, but impossible due to iOS permissions before now. We now allow (depending on user settings) background data collection (the app checks network type when the iOS system itself detects a significant change in location). This means that users can now contribute much more to our crowdsourcing project, and therefore to the coverage maps we publish on this website

    2) Better stats for users: one of the features users often request is better information on their actual network performance, often so this can be used when talking to their service operators. The new in-app stats show you how your network has been working for you over a set period of time (for instance, what % of the time you have had a 3g connection over the past day/week/month). We also let you see how your stats compare to the average global OpenSignal users – to put your experience of mobile connectivity into context.

    3) Overhauled UI: The app looks completely different, with a much cleaner and more intuitive interface and this makes it much easier to improve your signal/find nearby Wi-Fi networks (we’ve also improved our Wi-Fi recommendation system, making use of foursquare data to, in some instances, tie free Wi-Fis to their locations.

    We hope you like the new version!

    opensignal_banner

     

    Posted in App Update | Tagged , | Leave a comment

    National Roaming: How much impact would it actually have?

    This weekend, Sajid Javid, the minister for Culture, Media and Sport announced plans to engage in talks with mobile operators in the UK to establish a ‘national roaming agreement’, whereby operators would consent to share their mobile network infrastructure in order to maximise coverage. The cause behind this announcement appears to have been David Cameron’s failure to get a good mobile phone signal while on holiday in Cornwall, alerting him to the realities of mobile network connection in much of the rural United Kingdom.

    This announcement achieved a great deal of publicity in the UK press, including some rather overexcited responses (the Times’ front page headline ran ‘End to mobile phone blackspots across UK’), but in none of these articles was the actual impact of a national roaming agreement analysed quantitatively. A national roaming agreement, while increasing network coverage for all networks, would not put an end to mobile blackspots as networks have a great deal of overlap in terms of their areas of provision. Using OpenSignal data gathered from over 40,000 users across the UK we are able to say exactly what impact a national roaming agreement would have, were one to be put into place.

    The Average UK user has no signal 15% of the time, under national roaming this would drop to 7% – a huge improvement, but in no way an ‘end to mobile blackspots’. National roaming would impact the discrete networks to slightly differing extents, as the following graph demonstrates:

    National roaming graphThe metric we use for analysing this is our coverage metric ‘time on no signal’, which looks at the proportion of time the average user has no mobile phone signal (2G or better). A part of ‘time on no signal’ includes a subset called ‘time on emergency calls only’ – a condition that arises when a mobile phone has access to an alternative network, but cannot access the network it is tethered to. Under a national roaming agreement, all ‘time on emergency calls only’ would therefore become time when the user did have a mobile connection. Therefore, by removing these times from our overall ‘no signal’ metric, we are able to derive the actual impact of a national roaming agreement on users in the UK.

    There are two further notes that need to be made about these findings in order to put them in proper context:

    1) National roaming would mean that absolute coverage for all networks was the same. However, the experienced coverage as reported by our metric, would still be slightly different – as the geographic (or demographic – cheaper phones get worse signal) arrangement of subscribers is different for each network. This can be demonstrated by a simple example – If a network has a reputation for poor coverage then consumers in rural areas may be put off from subscribing, meaning that the users that do subscribe are predominantly urban and therefore experience low ‘time on no network’ (because cities are generally well covered). Vodafone have a much higher current ‘time on no network’ but this may simply reflect the fact that they have a good reputation for rural coverage and therefore a higher proportion of rural users – who may not necessarily be served any better by any other network. ‘Time on no network’ represents coverage as it is experienced by its users, so one network having a higher ‘time on no network’ does not necessarily mean that their actual geographic coverage is any smaller than their competitors but may simply reflect selection bias. Our panel of 40,000 users is more than enough for us to be confident in the representativeness of our data.

    2) National roaming would not necessarily be a good thing. If national roaming truly did ‘eliminate blackspots’ then it would be a good thing for consumers. However, since there will still be significant coverage holes in a post-agreement world, national roaming might end up reducing the incentives for operators to ever support these remaining areas. Increasingly, independent regulators (such as ourselves) are making coverage data publicly accessible, meaning that for the first time consumers are able to access accurate network information on which to base their purchasing decisions. As this information becomes more diffuse the market itself becomes more efficient, forcing networks increasingly to differentiate according to their network provision (speed and coverage) rather than simply price or handset availability. If consumers have to assume all networks offer the same service (because there is no way to verify if they do or don’t) then national roaming would make sense as it would fit the market to consumers’ expectations – helping them to make better decisions according to the few variables they can easily distinguish between. With better coverage information becoming more easily available, national roaming might end up limiting expansions that the networks themselves would make in order to appeal to different segments of a better-informed market.

    Posted in Mobile Trends | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

    StormTag fully funded

    After just two days on Kickstarter, StormTag is fully funded with over $19k committed from 507 backers. But there’s still time to pre-order the key-ring weather station from $20 and boost the sensors you can use with WeatherSignal

    stormtag.

    The basic StormTag has a pressure and temperature sensors and Bluetooth LE radio. It sends data to your smartphone – WeatherSignal will be providing the initial app. To WeatherSignal the StormTag will appear functionally as extra device sensors, though they will update less frequently as we want the battery life to measured in years. Texas Instruments have shown that a year long battery life can be achieved with Bluetooth LE transmission every second, so we should be able to get the data updating faster than every minute.

    On top of the pressure and temperature sensors, StormTag+ is rocking a UV meter and a humidity sensor (hygrometer) and has 10 days data storage capacity. This means you can leave your StormTag+ somewhere, come back days later and pick up all the data. We’re hoping this will have many applications: agricultural monitoring, studying the urban heat island, optimising your central heating and A/C system. We’re hopeful that this low price and the simplicity of the product (no buttons, no charging) will help put this in places where climate data sources are most lacking.

    Get them on KickStarter.

    Comparison of StormTag and StormTag+

    Pressure Temp. Humid. Light Data Storage Connection Size Price
    StormTag Bluetooth LE Tiny $20
    StormTag+ 10 days Bluetooth LE Tiny $35
    Posted in Sensors, WeatherSignal | Leave a comment

    A $20 Weather Station

    At WeatherSignal we turn phones into weather stations. The WeatherSignal app takes readings of device sensors such as light, pressure, temperature and humidity from devices and uses these to create crowd-sourced weather maps. But there’s a problem, we’re limited to the sensors on each device. This is changing.

    We’ve teamed up with StormTag, who’re building incredibly low cost, low power, waterproof temperature/pressure sensors that communicate via Bluetooth LE. We’ll be incorporating StormTag compatibility into WeatherSignal, we’re also committing to building an iOS version of WeatherSignal to support StormTag. We’ll be working closely with the makers Hex3.co to ensure good battery life on device and sensor and a smooth experience.

    At the time of writing, after 6 hours of being live this project is 1/3 funded with $5k committed. Thanks for your support!

    StormTag means that everyone with an Android or iOS device will be able to monitor temperature and pressure. These are key weather variables – pressure in particular plays the key role in determining weather flows, and in predicting and monitoring extreme weather events. We believe crowdsourcing this data will provide a dataset that far exceeds the resolution of professional weather stations.

    stormtag1
    Support the StormTag on Kickstarter and get it for $20

    Update!
    Following feedback form early backers and discussions with the engineers, Jon has decided to offer a StormTag+ for $35, the extra $15 allows the addition of:

    • Up to 10 days data logging. Weather data is stored in onboard memory when your phone or tablet is not connected to StormTag+.
    • Humidity Sensor: to provide more accurate forecasting and more complete data collection.

    • UV sensor: StormTag+ will now know if it is outside and provide even more valuable data.

    The current state of temperature and pressure sensors
    On Android our own research (based on millions of phones and tablets using OpenSignal) indicates that 74% of phones do not have a pressure meter. On iOS not a single device has a pressure sensor, although there are rumours the iPhone 6 may come with one. This means only a small proportion of smartphone users can currently contribute to our weather maps.

    Temperature sensors are even less common, only about 1/10 devices currently have one (the Galaxy S4, Moto X and Galaxy Note III being the market leaders). However it’s quite likely this percentage will decrease. Unlike its predecessor the Galaxy S5 does not have a temperature sensor, the Galaxy Note 4 will probably also lack a temperature sensor. The next generation of leading Samsung devices do not have temperature sensors.

    The StormTag is not the first project to enhance smartphones with external sensors, Robocat raised over $300,000 to provide a thermometer add on, Thermodo. Since then other projects have added wind and (most crucially) pressure sensors. But we think the StormTag can reach a far larger audience.

    StormTag Features

    • Pressure and temperature sensors powered by a button cell (anticipated battery life in years)
    • StormTag+: humidity and UV sensors also included
    • Lowest price point of any sensor add-on with these capabilities
    • Bluetooth LE means it can monitor the weather passively, unlike other sensors that plug in via the headphone jack
    • The fact that it is waterproof and can be worn away from the device (rather than attached it) mean the temperature readings are more reliable
    • Using the headphone jack to collect data, can be problematic – it typically requires the device providing sufficient power through the jack
    • StormTag+: 10 days data logging – leave the StormTag+ outdoors, in your baot, in a Stevenson Screen – when you’re back you’ll be able to pick up the data with your device.

    It’s important to note StormTag will only work with Bluetooth LE devices – this includes all of the iPhone 5 range and most new high end Android devices (HTC One, Nexus 5, S5) along with a lot of cheaper ones. We’re expecting to see the number of devices with this technology trend strongly upwards as iBeacons and other Bluetooth beacons gain ground.

    If you love sensors, you’ll know about some of the other players in the market already, here’s a rundown:

    Pressure Temp. Humid. Light Gas Wind Connection Size Price
    StormTag Bluetooth LE Tiny $20
    StormTag+ Bluetooth LE Tiny $35
    SensorDrone Bluetooth LE Small $200
    Node Kore with Clima module Headphone jack Medium $225
    Thermodo Headphone jack Tiny $30
    Shaka Weather Station Headphone jack Medium $100
    Vaavud Headphone jack* Medium $60
    Weatherflow Windmeter Headphone jack Medium $35

    The Vaavud uses the headphone jack as an axis to rotate about, but does not communicate via the headphone jack (it uses periodic distortion of the magnetic field around the phone caused by its rotating magnets)

    If you’ve read through all this, you should really back the project on Kickstarter and download the WeatherSignal Android app.

    Here’s the KickStarter video:

    Posted in Sensors, WeatherSignal | Leave a comment