Is there a need for an IoT Communications Module that is Open Source?

Dear Community,

We would appreciate some of your much valued feedback & thoughts on one of our projects: Cicada WiFi which is an Open Source IoT Comms Module, developed by Okra Solar, with GSM and WiFI capabilities for adding open remote monitoring & controlling capabilities to energy access appliances.

Our question to you: Is there a need for an Open Source IoT comms module in energy access?
What do you think are advantages and disadvantages to an open-source comms module?

We’d love to hear your thoughts based on your own experience or what you’ve seen in the market.

For example, in our recent webinar about Cicada, Access to Energy Institute (A2EI) mentioned that they personally see many advantages to this open-source IoT comms module because the Open Source nature of it allows them to customize it to fit their specific needs (ex: by making the chip bigger to have more flash memory available) – something that wouldn’t be possible with a proprietary IoT comms module.

And if you’d like to see if Cicada WiFi could be the solution for your IoT communication needs, then we have made sample PCBA board available on Seeed Studio for testing in your own energy access aplliances like mini-grids or Solar Home Systems.

Thank you in advance for sharing any of your insights with the rest of our Community – that way we all learn from each other.