Coverage

A Review of LongAP Helium Miner

By
Kyle Reyes
January 3, 2023

LongAP is not currently selling any products, and they warn of fraudulent websites that are trying to scam customers. They appear to be developing products from the inside and have stopped manufacturing their two Helium miners, the LongAP Pro and the LongAP Light at this current time. LongAP has a pretty low online presence in terms of social media and reviews, meaning that they have not made a big splash, positively or negatively, quite yet. 

LongAP Pro

Specifications

  • Dual Core 800 MHz processor
  • 256 MB DDR3 RAM
  • 1 GB LAN
  • Optional 4G/LTE Model
  • Optional GPS Antenna
  • Operational in EU868, US915, AU915
  • 3 dBi 868 Antenna
  • Weather-proof housing and mounting bracket
  • 1 Year Warranty

The LongAP Pro model is a little over $1,000 and is a sturdy and shiny outdoor LoRa gateway. While it is not currently for sale, it is designed to run on the Helium network, but LongAP has plans to create miners that are able to be used on multiple decentralized networks, though the term “miner” might be unique to Helium’s network. This device has a comprehensive dashboard that allows both you (the owner) and support at LongAP to ensure your device is running smoothly and operating at peak performance from the moment you put it into an outlet at home. 

This model comes with an antenna, and through the integrated dashboard, you can customize your antenna to comply with local regulations. 

LongAP Light

Specifications

  • 500 MHz processor
  • 128 MB DDR3 RAM
  • 100 MB LAN
  • Optional GPS Antenna
  • Operational in EU868, US915, AU915
  • 3 dBi 868 Antenna
  • Weather-proof housing and mounting bracket
  • 1 Year Warranty

The LongAP Light is not currently available for sale, and their website, at this time, has not been updated since the beginning of 2022. Just like the pro, the LongAP helium miners are also designed to function on different internet of things networks. LongAP has, in fact, just released that they are focusing their efforts on a new company called ThingsIX! 

User Reviews

There are not many user reviews of LongAP Helium miners, so we advise caution when dealing with them. There are not currently any LongAP models for sale, but the company appears to be running, and there is an important lack of negative comments about this company, which is a good sign. LongAP has a pretty low social media presence, but they have recently tweeted about their partnership with ThingsIX, so you can expect their company to start getting the gears into motion soon. 

Keep an eye out for LongAP in the future. They may release some excellent products that allow you to mine Helium efficiently and reliably.

Performance and Reliability

There are not many reviews of LongAP at this time to base the performance and reliability of LongAP Helium miners, but they go to fair lengths on their website to make it seem like they would have a great customer support system. Customer support is imperative when it comes to purchasing Helium miners from any company because things can go wrong that are very hard to troubleshoot. Helium mining is a new thing, and there are not any cure allscurealls that we’ve come to know in other technologies like phones. A secure line to the company’s support structure is a great sign for a Helium mining company. 

LongAP and ThingsIX

There are a lot of exciting things happening at ThingsIX headquarters. They are working with LongAP to create a decentralized IoT network from the Netherlands. 

ThingsIX is a new global decentralized network that has recently partnered with LongAP as its main source of hardware to back the project. This is another way in which Helium miner companies, like LongAP, can provide their solutions to a company. While Helium took the lead on a lot of these ideas, there are a lot of other ways in which to implement a decentralized network on the Internet of Things and beyond. It could be more focused, only transmitting a specific kind of data, or it could be different in other ways as well. Whatever the case, companies like LongAP have a lot of possible growth when it comes to the products they make and the solutions they provide. 

LongAP has not yet revealed the technology that they will bring to the table in relation to their partnership with ThingsIX, but it is safe to assume that they will provide wireless hotspots much like their Helium miners to the company as their primary source of building the network over the nation. It appears that ThingsIX is also basing its incentive system around a cryptocurrency and that it will reward it to its users in much the same way that HNT is rewarded to Helium users.  

What is ThingsIX?

ThingsIX, or Things over the Internet Exchange, is a decentralized global network that connects the internet of things and follows a similar structure to Helium. It rewards users for providing coverage with gateways and hotspots in order to deliver data security and reliability to users using a blockchain network. Existing LoRa gateways are expected to function on the ThingsIX network, but you should check your specific model of Helium miner, if you have one, to see if it can operate on the ThingsIX network as well. 

It seems like the introduction of other internet of things networks will get a bit chaotic, especially if the technology is designed so miners are able to mine on any of them. The biggest variable in rewards is the saturation of your location. If there are too many miners or too few miners, you will not mine many rewards on your Helium miner. It may be more complicated than switching your miner from Helium to ThingsIX and back (if, for instance, there was a fee) but that has the potential of creating an environment where your location is not profitable for a Helium miner but could be very profitable for a ThingsIX miner and vise versa. 

ThingsIX Roadmap

At the beginning of 2022, the core developers of ThingsIX designed and created the first prototype of the code that will govern the network mapping and proof of concept. The developers, after creating this code, decided to go forward with their plan. From that, the ThingsIX Foundation was born. In the third quarter of 2022, the ThingsIX Foundation was established in Eindhoven in the Netherlands. From the Netherlands, they plan to build a worldwide network.

In the final quarter of 2022, they plan to launch their data network. This means that LoRa gateways can exchange data packets with the end users but the network is not fully operational. There are no rewards paid out at this time, but the network is up and running. This is the phase where they can test their mapping and verification, and all of the prototypes can be put into action all over the world. In the first quarter of 2023, they will begin selling (in the EU) their beta hotspots. This is where, we believe, LongAP comes in. LongAP, which is also based in the Netherlands, manufactures and distributes hotspots to interested participants so they can jump-start the network once it is time. 

That time is the second quarter of 2023. This is when the network is launched in full force and when rewards are given out. Their reward system will be a little different from Helium’s but it follows the same principles. Users are incentivized to purchase and maintain their hotspot miners because doing so will net them rewards in the form of cryptocurrency tokens. During the rest of 2023 ThingsIX plans on expanding the frequency bands that their mappers support in order to add more regions, like the US. 

During that time, the ThingsIX Foundation will receive a share of the rewards in order to continue the maintenance and development of the ThingsIX network into the future. There is more data on the ThingsIX Whitepaper, but the following section will explain how ThingsIX will work. 

ThingsIX Whitepaper

ThingsIX is still in the development phase, but its whitepaper outlines its plans in clear and understandable language. The LoRa network is the basis for this technology, and it is also the basis for a lot of the decentralized networks that are growing around the world. LoRa operates in license-free bands and offers long-range wireless connectivity for devices on the internet of things. LoRa devices require a very different network then, say, something like Verizon due to their mobility and abundance. 

From their whitepaper, they say, “ThingsIX introduces a decentralized, crowd-sourced, incentivized, resilient, highly-available network for IoT devices using LoRa® technology that provides a high quality of service and coverage verified by end-device-like devices by using a mapper.”

ThingsIX uses a common form of blockchain that’s been industry-proven to provide secure and efficient communication over a decentralized hotspot-based network. They plan on selling these hotspots to interested parties and rewarding them for owning and operating that hotspot as well as giving them a vote in the company’s future. ThingsIX is planning for a rapid development that will allow devices to connect to their network, but they will first try and grow the network so it provides sufficient, reliable coverage to be a worthwhile alternative to sending and receiving data. 

The reward system is similar to other decentralized networks, but specifically, it is a distribution of tokens where 75% go to the users and 25% go to the ThingsIX Foundation. Of the 75% that go to the users, 

  • 60% goes to the coverage provided by hotspots
  • 20% goes to coverage mapped by mappers
  • 20% goes to maintenance token holders

Those maintenance token holders are, in essence, those who supported the project’s development before it went live. Maintenance tokens (THIXM) will be available for purchase and allow people to invest in the company as a way to get rewards in the future. ThingsIX is governed by three directors, and those directors are chosen by everyone who has ThingsIX maintenance tokens. The ThingsIX Foundation is a non-profit organization that is entirely dedicated to the success of the ThingsIX network. 

Internet of Things Networks

Smartphones and computerscomputes are common devices that we use to connect to the internet, but the internet of things is all around us. 

The Internet of Things is a new network that’s evolved around the fact that there are tons of devices all around the world that can connect to the internet. These devices have come about for a variety of reasons, one of which is efficiency. If, for instance, you hook up all of your home lightings to an app on your smartphone you gain the ability to manage your lights from anywhere. No longer must you walk from room to room to flip lightswitches to alter the lighting in your house. You can get cozy in bed and tap your phone a few times to ensure that you haven’t left any lights on. On a larger scale, companies are using IoT devices to gather data on everything from weather to traffic. They leverage this data to provide better and more efficient coverage to that area, but all of those devices need a network upon which they can transfer their data. 

The beginning of the internet of things was with a soda machine on Carnegie Mellon’s Campus. Students programmed the machine to monitor its stock and the temperature of the drinks so they could handle that machine more efficiently.  Now, there are more than 10 billion devices connected to the internet. That staggering amount of devices accomplish all manner of things, but to do so they need a way to send their data. More recently, they need a secure way to send their data. 

Helium and the Growing Popularity of DeWi Networks

Helium has an internet of things network which they have created to provide that secure connection upon which devices can transfer their data. The sheer quantity of devices that are sending data makes security a huge concern because a lot of these devices are not protected or secured. It is unlikely that a consumer will, for instance, change the password on their light panel because they are worried about a dedicated and malevolent hacker using it to gain access to some database. People have taken advantage of this understandably lax security to hack into these devices to mess with servers and networks. 

Helium and other services are proposing a security fix by using crypto’s blockchain technology. They are working to create a network that is much more secure and is able to compartmentalize and handle keeping these billions of nodes in check. 

Decentralized wireless networks are growing in popularity because of their ability to provide a more cost-effective solution to sending data. Helium’s IoT miners are available for the general public and come with the same incentive as the ThingsIX hotspots. Owners receive rewards for providing network coverage from their hotspots and the company is able to sell their hotspots to individuals rather than contract a company to create the infrastructure necessary to provide the same coverage. 

Crypto-Driven Incentives

Crypto is proving an interesting way to reward customers. Helium did not start out offering a crypto-based incentive system, but a few years into their development they switched to that, and, since then, their company’s popularity has skyrocketed. There is something enticing about the passive rewards generated by these devices that is bringing a lot of people into the fold. Helium has the added benefit of outputting a real product into the world rather than other crypto projects, which do not have such tangible results. 

Helium is leveraging crypto to accomplish something practical instead of just, well, leveraging crypto. A lot of crypto coins exist in a weird space where the average joe cannot make heads nor tails about them. They are surrounded by headlines and buzz, but a lot of people are left with the question: what does crypto really do? Does it make any difference for the average person or solve problems that exist outside of the crypto niche? In the case of Helium — yes! Users mining on their network are mining with a purpose — the continued success of Helium’s network and a stake in a larger and more successful company. 

Key Takeaways

There are a lot of developments surrounding the internet of things and decentralized wireless networks. Sometimes it’s hard to keep all the information organized! We’ve organized some of the key points of this article so you can walk out with some serious knowledge about LongAP Helium miners. 

  • LongAP Helium miners are not currently for sale. This Netherlands-based hotspot company is focusing its efforts on ThingsIX. 
  • ThingsIX is working to create a decentralized internet of things network, much like Helium
  • They are based in the Netherlands, so their company is bound to approach their solutions in a different way from America-based Helium

Networks designed to move data on the internet of things are growing in popularity of late as the internet of things grows and grows.

Kyle Reyes
Kyles Reyes is a journalist from Pittsburgh, PA that specializes in the wireless industry, phone plan comparisons & advice.