Some Frequently Asked Questions
It all sound very technical?
At first glance it appear complicated but it really is very simple.
Mobi.Control outputs are operated from remote via phone calls, SMS or Tweets.
Mobi.Control can send phone call, SMS, Email, Tweet (and Fax, if supported by network operator) on local events, all you have to do is connect power to the unit and wire it to your machine.
What is a SIM card?
A SIM card (Subscriber Identity Module) is a smart card that stores data for GSM cellular telephone subscribers.
Such data includes user identity and phone number, network authorization data, contact lists and text messages.
Security features include authentication and encryption to protect data and prevent eavesdropping.
What is SMS?
SMS (Short Message Service) is how text messages are sent to mobile phones.
These messages are up to 160 characters long and can contain alarm messages, production messages, fault messages or anything you need to know from your process.
SMS can also work through a network service centre and be forwarded as an email or fax.
What are Tweets?
A tweet is a short message sent on Twitter. It contains 140 or fewer characters.
Twitter accepts text messages from mobile phones.
Mobi.Control can send alerts and receive commands through Twitter.
Anyone can get started with Twitter by going to their website and registering for an account.
Do I need a telephone line?
No. Mobi.Control is based on GSM (mobile phone) technology so it is wireless and can be used wherever there is GSM coverage.
This makes it ideal for applications where it is costly to run, and lease, a standard wired phone line.
Of course you can manage Mobi.Control from any phone terminal (mobile, cordless, landline).
What type of SIM card do I need?
Mobi.Control requires a 3V or 1,8V mini SIM to operate on GSM networks.
It could be a prepaid, postpaid or contract SIM card.
How much will it cost to run?
By using free phone rings you do not have to pay for controlling an output.
Notifications of the successful switching of the relay can be sent through free phone rings.
Of course you may choose to issue your commands through SMS, the cost will be charged to callers.
Alerts sent by Mobi.Control will be charged to SIM card installed into the device.
What do I need to configure Mobi.Control?
You can use MobiSuite to program the unit connected to serial port of your PC.
MobiSuite could be used also to 'build' a configuration SMS to be sent to the remote unit you want to configure or modify. If you have a smartphone you don't need to enter SMS text manually: take a snapshot of QRcode generated by MobiSuite.
Can I use the same GsmSuite cable for Mobi.Control?
Yes, the cable is the same but MobiSuite must be used insead of GsmSuite.
Can I use Mobi.Control outside the Home Country?
Mobi.Control can be installed in any Country and controlled from any Country where a GSM network is available.
It's a quad band unit capable to operate worldwide.
Roaming extra cost will be charged to all the traffic outside the Home Country.
How do I know that I can get a signal in the installation area?
To check if the proposed location is suitable, the best way is to check the coverage with a mobile phone working on the network you want to use for Mobi.Control.
Will it work in the USA?
Yes. Mobi.Control is an approved quad band device with automatic selection of bands.
How can I be sure about outputs switching?
You can set the “Feedback” option that notifies the successful command processing.
It could be a free ring or an SMS.
If you want real time confirmation you may use keyboard codes (DTMF)
How can I know the status of the Mobi.Control inputs and outputs?
You can query Mobi.ontrol at any time for a status message reporting operating status and information for all channels that has been enabled.
Can Mobi.Control operate in case of a blackout?
When the optional rechargeable Li-Poly battery is fitted, Mobi.Control can operate for several hours (including relays) without main power supply.
You may also set specific alerts related to main power supply failure and recovery.
How many different alarm signals can I connect to each unit?
Each Mobi.Control has 8 digital inputs, 2 counter inputs (could be used as additional digital inputs) and 2 analog inputs (could be used as additional digital inputs) which allow you to connect various outputs from your machine, process or anything that has a switch contact. This could be as simple as a limit switch or a door to alert you of tamper or the contacts of a thermostat to inform you of an over/under temperature alarm.
What can I measure from analog inputs?
Analog inputs can be configured to measure in the range 0 ... 2V, 0 ... 10V or 0 ... 20mA.
You may set the full scale value (to convert the measured value to any engineering unit you want)
You may set an offset value (i.e.: to measure in the range 4 ... 20mA).
You may set analog inputs to accept NTC temperature sensors.
Can I set a time based operation?
Yes. You can set up to 100 operation to be executed once or recursively at due date and time.
Can I build a thermostat?
Yes, analog inputs can be configured to accept up to 2 NTC sensors to report ambient temperature.
Outputs could be used to control your heater/cooler, setpoint can be easily changed by SMS.
You can query Mobi.Control at any time for a status message including measured temperature and output status.
Can I send a message on the input opening and closing?
Yes. Alerts can be associated to all local events.
What type of alert messages does Mobi.Control send?
Mobi.Control can send the following alerts: SMS, RING, Email, Tweets.
Mobi.Control can send FAX messages if the conversion service is supported by network operator. Email or Tweet can be used to trigger internet services, opening a new world of opportunities.
Can I send alerts to more than one person?
Yes, you can configure up to 100 recipients, for each one you may define one ore more alerts (SMS, RING, Email, Tweet), each one can have its specific text message.
Do I need to buy an external modem or any accessories for using Mobi.Control?
No. Mobi.Control includes a GSM/GPRS radio modem.
You must provide a power supply source and the antenna (some Mobi.Control version may have an embedded antenna).
Can I link two Mobi.Controls each other?
Yes. A local output may be linked to a remote input and vice-versa.
More generally, any event can be used to control a remote output.
You can operate the link using free calls, DTMF codes or SMS.
Can I use Mobi.Control in other applications than management of household loads?
Yes. Mobi.Control is a general purpose device thus can be used to manage heating system, irrigation, lighting... but also within an industrial environments, building automation and in commercial sector.
Do I need a PLC to manage Mobi.Control?
No. Mobi.Control has an internal programmable logic for creating small automations simply and quickly.
Will it work with my PLC?
Yes. Unlike standard GSM RS232 Modems, Mobi.Control is very simple to connect to a PLC.
You may interface inputs and outputs in a classic electric circuit, but you can also operate Mobi.Control through RS232 interface by means of simplified commands.
How do I connect to the remote output relay and is this safe to use?
You can wire your external device (pump, lights, gate-opener) into the relay outputs available on Mobi.Control.
You just have to watch that the current & voltage of your controlled load are within the rated values (250Vac / 3A).
Do not use this feature to operate any machinery that may endanger life.
Where can I download the instruction manual?
Literature, software and upgrades can be downloaded for free at the product page on this website.
You can also explore the complete online reference.
What power supply do I need?
You need to provide 12 ... 24V AC or DC power supply, at least 5VA.
Can anyone activate the Mobi.Control via phone call?
Depending on configuration, Mobi.Control accepts incoming calls from registered users only.
You may use wildcards to enable groups or anyone.
Can it be switched on and off by means of keyboard codes?
Yes, you may configure the unit to answer authorized incoming calls and accept up to 5 commands issued by means of phone keyboard (DTMF), receiving immediate audible feedback.
Can it be switched on and off by sending an SMS text message?
Yes, using SMS commands (up to 5 in a single message) you can switch the outputs permanently, for a specific time or until a given date.
Can anyone activate the Mobi.Control via SMS?
Depending on configuration, Mobi.Control accepts incoming SMS from registered users only.
You may use wildcards to enable groups or anyone.
You may also specify your own command text, this could be considered a sort of password for remote operations.
Are outputs retentive?
You my set outputs to be retentive, thus restored after a power supply failure, depending on your application.
What type of signal do I need to trigger a digital input?
Mobi.Control provides the power supply for inputs, use a relay contact, float switch, magnetic switch, PLC output etc.
You may also use an external SELV (Safety Extreme Low Voltage) power supply.
What's the right antenna to be used?
The antenna should be choosen to fit the specific environment, depending on the location you are mounting the unit.
An embedded antenna version of Mobi.Control is available, usually an FME connector is provided for the external antenna (see our Accessories).
What is RoHS?
The RoHS Directive stands for "the restriction of the use of certain hazardous substances in electrical and electronic equipment".
This Directive bans the placing on the EU market of new electrical and electronic equipment containing more than agreed levels of lead, cadmium, mercury, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyl (PBB) and polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants.
Manufacturers need to understand the requirements of the RoHS Directive to ensure that their products are compliant.
How can I keep my Mobi.Control up to date?
We may release upgrades to improve the product or to fix bugs (there is no perfect product in real world).
A simple upgrading procedure is available to registered customers.
Once upgraded, Mobi.Control must be enabled entering an activation code that we'll provide on request.