The evolution of OTA: evaluating your asset update options

The Particle Team article author avatarThe Particle TeamOctober 27, 2023
The evolution of OTA: evaluating your asset update options

Over-the-air (OTA) updates are a key functionality for IoT, allowing maintenance and enhancement of devices remotely. With OTAs, you can deploy new firmware, configurations, media assets and more without physical access. This enables more agile, scalable product management post-launch.

While firmware OTAs have become common, “Asset OTA” takes it a step further by updating additional binaries beyond firmware like images, audio, and data files. Asset OTA simplifies keeping products current by consolidating all your over-the-air needs. 

Particle publicly launched its Asset OTA capabilities in Sept 2023. As demand grows for system-wide OTA updates, it’s important to evaluate which options are best for your project.

Comparing Key Providers

OTA Competitor Comparison Table

This table summarizes how Particle Asset OTA stacks up across key features including security, flexibility, ease of integration and more. Read on for more details comparing Particle’s solution with other providers. 

Particle Asset OTA 

Particle’s Asset OTA extensions enable robust asset delivery leveraging their secure OTA platform. Customers can update coprocessor firmware, deploy new media files, modify configurations, and more. Benefits include flexibility, security, reliability and tight integration with Particle’s end-to-end services.

Ayla Networks 

Ayla Networks offers OTA focused on WiFi smart home devices. Their solution allows over-the-air updates for firmware, configuration files, and other assets. However, Ayla’s key value proposition is around smart home capabilities rather than general purpose IoT. Their end-to-end platform provides features tailored specifically for connected home applications.


Golioth provides OTA firmware update capabilities with extensive flexibility but requires more hands-on hardware and software integration work upfront. Their platform offers a high degree of customization for advanced users at the expense of out-of-the-box simplicity. Golioth is well-suited for those with strong device-level development skills.

Blues Wireless 

Blues Wireless’ Outboard FW Update feature specifically targets external MCU firmware updates over UART. It provides a convenient solution for that singular use case. However, Outboard FW Update lacks the breadth of update scenarios supported by Particle’s Asset OTA. Blues is ideal for simple external MCU firmware updates.

Electric Imp

Electric Imp lacks built-in Asset OTA capabilities natively. While skilled users could develop custom solutions on top of Electric Imp’s platform, it requires significantly more effort compared to Particle’s integrated offering. For those seeking Asset OTA out-of-the-box, Electric Imp may not be the best fit.

Selecting the Right Partner

In summary, Particle Asset OTA shines for those seeking:

  • Robust security – Particle utilizes enterprise-grade security leveraging their experience across industries.
  • Seamless integration – With Particle’s end-to-end platform, Asset OTA tightly integrates for a smooth experience.
  • Broad use case support – Particle’s flexibility allows Asset OTA to adapt to diverse needs.
  • Production scale – Particle’s focus on supporting devices from prototype through production allows for scaling.

Ultimately, assessing your needs around security, use cases, production-readiness and more will determine the right Asset OTA partner. Learn more about Asset OTA features here– and contact Particle to learn more about taking your products to the next level with over-the-air superpowers!

Building with Asset OTA

Looking for a fun way to get started with Particle and Asset OTA? Check out our Dynamic Micro Ad Display tutorial here. Use a Particle Photon 2 to show ads that change over time thanks to Asset OTA and collect impression metrics.

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