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In December 2018, Microsoft launched the Azure IoT certification service, a web-based test automation workflow to streamline the certification process through self-serve tools. Azure IoT certification service (AICS) was designed to reduce the operational processes and engineering costs for hardware manufacturers to get their devices certified for Azure Certified for IoT program and be showcased on the Azure IoT device catalog.

The initial version of AICS focused on IoT device certification. Today, we are taking steps to expand the service to now also support Azure IoT Edge Device certification. Azure IoT Edge device is a device which comprised of three key components: IoT Edge modules, IoT Edge runtime and a cloud-based interface. Learn more about these three components in this blog explaining IoT Edge.

What it means to certify as Azure IoT Edge device is that the certification program validates the functionality of three key components described above. The certification program also ensures that the identity of a device is protected through validation of security components. You can review specific technical requirements for Azure IoT Edge device certification.

This expansion of AICS capabilities builds on the related expansion of the Azure Certified for IoT program to support Azure IoT Edge devices which was announced in June 2018. Since then, certified Azure IoT Edge device ecosystem has grown rapidly with additional operating system support such as Windows IoT and Edge module ecosystem which allows any partners to build containerized app to deploy modules to a range of Azure IoT Edge devices. You can also see all the certified Azure Edge IoT devices here.

With the web-based test workflow now updated to also certify Edge devices, AICS not only helps improve the overall quality of IoT deployments but also simplifies the certification processes for device manufacturers. From now on, all device manufacturers are required to run AICS to complete the certification process. To learn more about AICS and see a demo of it in action, please refer to this episode of the IoT Show on Channel 9.

Ecosystem partners have endorsed this strategy and approach as well.  One partner who recently used the tool provided this comment:

Azure IoT certification service” (AICS) simplifies the validation process for Azure IoT Edge device certification and increase our quality with consistency for Azure IoT Edge devices.

–Tomoyasu Suzuki, President of Plat’Home Co., Ltd

Azure IoT Edge flow within AICS

The workflow and user experience for Azure IoT Edge device is similar to the IoT device certification workflow. You will need to select the device’s OS, prepare your device to register to specified IoT Hub instances, and then start running. Step by step instructions are provided in this certification documentation.

There are three key differences for Azure IoT Edge from IoT device certification flow:

  1. “Edge certified” checkbox needs to be checked to invoke the AICS workflow for Azure IoT Edge

    To start AICS for Azure IoT Edge devices, first you need to ensure that you select “Edge Certified” checkbox under Azure IoT Edge section in the first page of device registration process when submitting a device for certification.

  2. Automated tests are different. AICS workflow for IoT devices validate for IoT Hub primitives like device-to-cloud, cloud-to-device, direct method and device twin properties. AICS workflow for IoT Edge device validate the presence of EdgeAgent module on the device, and also test to ensure that a sample Edge module is successfully deployed to the device.

    To learn more about this process please see our blog on streamlined IoT device certification.

  3. Upon submission, AICS will inform the Microsoft team to follow up with you and provide guidance to package and ship the physical device to the Microsoft team. This step is not necessary for IoT device certification process. The confirmation dialog is shown below.

Confirmation Dialog Box from AICS
AICS makes the certification process easy and intuitive. We hope every device manufacturers to submit your devices for certification.

Next steps

Go to Partner Dashboard to start your submission.

If you have any questions, please contact Azure Certified for IoT.

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