The Hologram platform was designed to be hardware agnostic. As a general rule, all cellular products will work with Hologram SIMs unless they were specifically designed to only work with one carrier.
With that in mind, there are some common factors you should consider. This blog outlines a few questions you should ask to ensure you make the right selection for your deployment.
How can I check that my device is ready to connect?
Even a widely accessible network requires getting third party devices hooked in and transmitting properly. This guide (the associated video here) goes over the basic steps needed to get your device working, as well as some of the common pitfalls we have seen in the process.
Step 1: Activate your Hologram SIM
Before you insert a SIM card into your device, you'll need to activate it. This is done on the Hologram Dashboard and this guide goes into that process in detail. Activation can take up to 15 minutes, as information has to propagate across all our network, but is often much faster. If you find your SIM isn't active after 1 hour, contact email@example.com. Once your SIM is active, you will see a green status indicator on the Dashboard. This means that your SIM is live on our global network!
Step 2: Place the SIM into your device
This sounds straightforward, but is a common issue we see in our forum and in helping customers face-to-face. First and foremost, look at your device's documentation and make sure you are using the correct size. If not, start with the largest SIM size and work your way down.
- SIM orientation matters! Most devices will have a diagram showing you where the SIM's notch needs to go. Placing it differently will not work.
- If your device doesn't have a diagram for SIM orientation, there may be a notch in the SIM holder.
- If your device doesn't have either, make sure the SIM slot/holder's contacts are touching the SIM's contacts.
Once your SIM has been inserted correctly, your device is ready to connect.
Step 3: Setting the Access Point Name (APN)
With an activated SIM card inserted, your device should be able to send and receive SMS messages without any other setup. To send and receive data, however, you need to set the APN. This can be done in one of four ways:
This usually occurs on mobile phones like iPhones and Android Phones. On larger embedded devices and more advanced modems, the manufacturers store large carrier APNs in memory. SIMs from larger carriers may already be included and Hologram is now included on many newer devices.
This usually applies to devices with no external input ports. We have seen this in cellular asset trackers, such as pet trackers. You can send SMS messages to your device using Hologram's Dashboard, information on that can be found here.
This usually applies to USB Modems and Routers. We have seen this in Huawei USB Modems like the MS2372 and Cradle Point's COR Series Routers.
This is common for development boards like Adafruit's Fona boards, Arduino's MKR, and PyComm boards.
Hologram's full APN information
APN username: (none)
APN password: (none)
IP Address: Dynamic (using DHCP)
Data Roaming: Enabled
Note: Your specific device might not ask for all of this information and no PIN is required.
Troubleshooting configuration issues
Since most devices work with Hologram SIMs it's best you refer to your device manual or device manufacturer for specific information such as AT commands, settings, or other configuration information.