All Ubidots accounts begin with a single App that can be accessed by users under a specified permission role to view, create, or edit resources (Devices, Dashboards, Events, Tokens and End users) within an Ubidots-powered App. Here's a quick refresher of Ubidots hierarchy:

  1. Ubidots License Admin – person who manages the Ubidots Account at industrial.ubidots.com, its App(s), Devices, Dashboards, Events, Organizations, Roles and Users. Ubidots accounts may have one or several admins.
  2. App(s) – an IoT portal holding Organizations, and a set of configurations that define its appearance, custom domain, locale, visible features, and language.
  3. Organization(s) – an entity containing Devices, Dashboards, Events, Tokens, and End users. End Users may have permissions over one or multiple Organizations.
  4. User Role – A permission group defined by the Admin, which specifies the type of access (Create, View, Edit, or Delete) an End User has over the entities contained in the Organization(s) the End User belongs to.
  5. End User – A password-protected account that belongs to one or several Organizations and accesses the Organization(s) entities through an App, and engages with them based on the particular Role that the user has been given.

This article is meant to help you better understanding and distinguish these terms in order to keep your Ubidots account and its Apps' architectures organized and your users engaged.

Please check these other articles to get familiar with how Organizations, Roles, and Users work:

Table of Contents

  1. What is an IoT Application
  2. Essential IoT Components
  3. Apps
  4. Organizations
    - Organizations as Customers
    - Organizations according to a Corporations different departments
    - Organizations as end-users
  5. Users (end-users)
  6. What is the difference between an App and an Organization?

What is an IoT Application?

An IoT Application is a web interface that incorporates sensor data - and optionally digital data (e.g. real-time stock or gas prices), allowing end-users to achieve a specific goal, be it making better decisions, reducing cost, improving safety, or all of them. Here are a few applications already live today.

Essential App Components

The Ubidots IoT Application Development and Deployment Platform maintains the following components and tools:

  • Dashboards: display sensor data in widgets for visualization and computation.
  • Alerts (or events): actions triggered when data readings fulfill or exceed a design rule. Alerts include SMS, Telegram, WebHook, or setting up a new variable. (e.g. send an alert when a device stops sending data). 
  • Analytics: mathematical, statistical, and serverless cloud functions to extract, transform, schedule, and analyze data.
  • Exporting: Ubidots let you export your data in CSV files
  • Sharing capabilities: Ubidots let you share via embedding URLs into a websites HTML.
  • User Management: An Administrator grants custom access and interaction capabilities for a given user.
  • Device Management: Ubidots' platform lets you monitor and automate your deployment. E.g.: batch adding devices, organizing device groups, or defining device types..

Apps

Apps are the foundational structures in Ubidots and can house different Organizations and Users. Different applications allow user to brand or white-label two, or more, Apps to be accessed by multiple different end-users. All Ubidots accounts begin with a single App. 

Most Ubidots accounts operate with a single App, branded to their own company's likeness with multiple Organizations that sub-divide the App into different access levels of devices, dashboards, alerts, and end-users.

When might I need a second App? 

One question we get a lot at Ubidots is when to purchase a second App vs. the free second Organization. Simply, if you wish to apply different, customized white-label branding experiences for end-users, then a Second App is required. For example, if you wish to deploy App 1 to your client ABC Hospital with their own branding and logos to monitor beds and then another client, XYZ Care, also wants a bed monitoring App, they too may have their own branding applied, only requiring the Ubidots Admin to create a second App. Alternatively, if your two clients simply wish to monitor beds and access their Dashboards, Devices, and Data via the same branded application under your Company's branding, this can easily be done with a single App and multiple Organizations.

If you would like to deploy a second App, please reach out to Ubidots and a member from our DevOps team will deploy your second application within 48 hours of the request. Please note a second application is accompanied by a $49/month fee. For any additional billing inquires, please see the Ubidots pricing.

Organizations

In Ubidots, an organization is any entity that manages users, devices, dashboards.

An Organization refers to an entity, e.g., company, a specific department, or a set of IoT devices and variables specific to a specific user roles within an App. Each Organization can have its own specific users, devices, dashboards, and more. Admins of Ubidots can sub-divide an App into Organizations based the Application's intended user experience and application design. After all - with Ubidots - the user is the App architect, designer, and builder.

One might think that an Organization might refer to a company, but in Ubidots an Organization is any structured entity with users, devices, and dashboards. 

Here are some different ways to conceptualize an Organization:

1.- Organizations as customers

Sell applications or allow customers to develop their own

ABC company provides tank monitoring devices connected to CO2 Air tanks to multiple local hospitals and uses Ubidots to remotely monitor each tank's pressure, location, and usage. In this use case, each hospital is assigned the same App within Ubidots, but each hospital is classified as a separate, individual Organization that would look as such: ABC Company has 1 APP with Hospital X, Hospital Y, and Hospital Z as 3 separate Organizations – each having access to only the devices located in their facilities.

2.- Organizations according to a Corporations different departments

Build an IoT solution for each department in a corporation.

A manufacturing plant wants to implement an Internet of Things applications in different areas across their company. They look to track their outbound shipments for the logistics department, monitor production output based on product counters and machine uptime statuses for the OT departments, and help the HR department improve wellness in the workplace by ensuring workers safety with mandatory break or rest periods. 

In this use case, the Corporation may purchases a Ubidots license and creates 3 organizations: Logistics, Production, and HR. Each having their own access to devices and data relative to their department and the data needed to best serve that Department. 

Here, it is important to note that even though the applications for each department are different, the entirety of the Corporation's data can still be housed into a single App controlled by the Ubidots Administrator. 

3.- Organizations as end-users

Deploy IoT solutions as a product with each end-user registered as an organization with one or more single devices

For OEMs and businesses using Ubidots to deploy end-user friendly products. Each organization be seen as a single end-user and device, and can automatically assigned using different Organizational TOKENS. If this model matches your business plan, please contact Ubidots sales for additional questions and to receive a tailed pricing plan for your IoT solution's deployment.

Users (end-users)

Users are any entry with assigned credentials to an individual as a Username, Email, and Password who can access your Ubidots Apps.

To create and manage users, check out this tutorial for more details.

Users are the individuals interacting with Ubidots powered Apps. Users can be collected into Grouped permissions, or each user can be given customized access or restrictions to any aspect of an App. The difference between Users and Organizations is that Organizations determine what dashboards, devices, alerts, and other elements the Users can interact with.

All Users, at the time of publishing this article, must be self created by the Ubidots Admin. For additional information to setting up an End-User in your Ubidots account, check out this helpful tutorial.

What is the difference between an App and an Organization?

An App is any user access portal that can be accessed by an end-user within an Organization. On the other hand, an Organization is a group of users that only has access to the devices, dashboards, and events provisioned by the Administrator of an Ubidots account. 

Apps being the parent of Ubidots' architecture, it is true that all Apps can have Organizations, and it is also true that no Organization can exist without a parent App.


To continue learning the Basics to your Ubidots account, have a look at the following articles to expedite your development.

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