TechMinds: Testing Off-Grid LoRa Radio Mesh Text Messaging with Meshtastic
Low cost ESP32 based LoRa capable boards have been available from marketplaces like Aliexpress for some time now. They typically include features such as LoRa, WiFi or Bluetooth and GPS all on a PCB board with small screen and battery holder for mobile use. LoRa is a modern IoT communications protocol that is designed to be operated with low power, and in a networked mesh-way for extended range. One application of this hardware is to use it as a mesh based text messaging system, using the Meshtastic firmware. This might be useful for teams of hikers, pilots, or skiiers who operate in remote areas without cell phone reception.
In his latest video Matthew from the Tech Minds YouTube channel shows how to install and use the Meshtastic firmware on a TTGO board. He uses the alpha firmware which has a web app, allowing users to send text messages through a web based GUI that users can connect to locally via WiFi.