What is a Thread Border Router and Thread Mesh Extender?
You may or may not have heard of a Thread Border Router, but they are positioned to become a staple of smart homes and smart buildings. For the uninitiated, Thread is an IPv6-based, low-power, wireless mesh networking standard that securely and robustly connects IoT devices together.
A Thread Border Router works to seamlessly connect devices on the Thread network to other IP-based networks, for example the Wi-Fi network in a user’s home. In more technical terms, a Thread Border Router provides bi-directional IP connectivity between Thread and Wi-Fi/Ethernet networks. The magic of Thread is that low-power nodes on the Thread network are IP-addressable like an Internet Host device, and the Thread Border Router is the essential piece of infrastructure that makes this end-to-end connectivity work.
Thread Mesh Extenders also live up to their name: they are always on Thread devices that serve to extend the range and link quality of the Thread network by acting as routers for messages between other devices, say for example battery-powered sensors.
The MMB Thread Border Router & Mesh Extender are sleek, lightweight powerhouses. The Border Router allows users to securely create a local Thread mesh network and connect Thread devices directly to the Internet. The Mesh Extender allows extension of the Thread mesh network to cover larger physical areas.
Both built with OpenThread, with support for a range of powerful Thread 1.2 and 1.3 features, our Border Router and Mesh Extender are the solution for provisioning and managing large Smart Building deployments of low-power Thread devices. They are also an ideal platform for building applications with Matter and other emerging application layer technologies such as KNX IoT.
Thread is an open standard for wireless communication designed for easy integration in enterprise networks and to reliably and securely connect thousands of wireless Internet of Things (IoT) devices in commercial buildings, enabling smart building automation. The benefits of using Thread for smart buildings include great support for low powered devices, easier installation and wireless technology, a self-configuring and self-healing mesh network, and end-to-end connectivity with broader IP based networks. More about Thread for Smart Buildings
A typical smart building topology includes long-life battery-powered end devices, powered mesh extenders (such as smart lights), and Border Routers for bi-directional connectivity, all running IPv6 and able to interoperate with other IP-based systems for building management.
“Thread enables IT convergence in a Smart Building across all of its systems with a secure IP-based configuration. A Thread Border Router plays an essential role in a Smart Building by connecting a Thread network seamlessly to other networks and enabling secure, fast and simple communications.”
– Sujata Neidig, Vice President of Marketing, Thread Group
“Matter’s support for Thread enables robust, reliable, and new categories of smart home products that can interoperate with any device on users’ networks. The MMB Thread Border Router and Mesh Extender provides the critical infrastructure to enable these great user experiences with Thread, and ensure your Matter product can easily connect to the devices and ecosystems you and your users choose.”
– Daniel Moneta, Marketing and Product Chair Matter
Working Group, IoT and Technology Marketing & Strategy Consultant
MMB’s Thread Border Router and Mesh Extender Features
When developing a custom IoT ecosystem, time to market and ease of development are critical. Leveraging Thread technology and over fifteen years of experience in IoT product development, the MMB Thread Border Router allows users to create Thread networks and connect them to the Internet.
With zero development effort, the MMB Thread Border Router can be configured to form a network, connect to other devices, and communicate data to the cloud, all while supporting your custom applications.
MMB’s Thread Border Router (TBR) acts as a bridge between your Thread enabled devices and your Wi-Fi (or Ethernet) router. The more Thread devices you have, the more of a mesh network you’re creating which allows for better communication. There’s no need to build your own Border Router to connect your solutions. Our flexible Thread Border Router will do just that.
The Thread Mesh Extender (TME) allows users to expand their network for large scale deployments. It is the ideal platform for customers looking to deploy their own Thread-based IoT solution for consumer or commercial applications.
TBR and TME
|OEM Device with options for custom branding and labels.
|Best-in-class device security, including secure boot, flash encryption and encrypted / signed upgrade images.
|Compatible with external Thread commissioners operating on standard platforms like your mobile phone, for securely provisioning devices to your Thread network.
|Suitable for operation in multiple regulatory regions, including North America and the EU, with compatible external power supplies.
|Small footprint, low profile, and low-power, with options for wall-mounting.
|Radio Co-Processor (RCP) design, with a highly stable 802.15.4 interface, and a powerful applications processor with integrated IPv6 stack.
|Based on the OpenThread Border Router (OTBR) implementation
|Provides seamless IP connectivity between your Wi-Fi / Ethernet and Thread networks, and an essential component for supporting Matter fabrics operating across multiple IP network segments.
|Supports service discovery via mDNS on your LAN, and SRP on your Thread network.
|Includes OpenThread WebUI for network management and device configuration, with options for custom branding.
|Operates as a Thread Mesh Extender (TME).
Table Demonstration of MMB Thread Border Router and Mesh Extender at Thread Group Members Meeting (April, 2023)
For more information on availability, pricing, and lead times, please contact an MMB IoT expert email@example.com.