1-Wire devices are used extensively in security, access control and asset management applications to measure and control a wide range of environmental parameters. 1-Wire sensors and readers are becoming increasingly popular due to their ruggedness, reliability, accuracy, ease of use but most of all, low price.
Today, iButton, a 1-Wire component that is sealed into a small stainless steel “button” similar to a disk-shaped watch battery, is widely used in access control and identification solutions quickly becoming the smart device of choice for Driver ID applications.
1-Wire/iButton has become an industry standard for a number of reasons, including:
- Simple integration: A single 1-Wire master can be easily programmed to communicate with multiple 1-Wire sensors on the same bus
- Ruggedness: The iButton is environmentally sealed and operates in harsh environments
- Versatility: iButtons are small and can attach unobtrusively to almost any fixed and mobile asset to deliver and record data
Besides Driver ID, iButton can be used for any number of applications where data needs to travel with a person or piece of equipment. This can include point-of-sale transactions, remote access authorization, wireless entry systems, data logging (ie. time, temperature, humidity, etc.), maintenance and quality control. iButton components use a unique serial number to communicate, ensuring they are constantly addressable and findable on a network.
Given the pervasiveness of 1-Wire sensors and iButton technology, solutions providers would do well to offer end users equipment that includes native or adapter support for 1-Wire devices.
For more technical information on 1-Wire in general, consult Maxim Integrated’s Overview of 1-Wire Technology and Its Use.