I'm designing a board with a small (8-bit) MCU onboard. Its job is to control a bunch of I/O and PWM signals, but does not handle any high-level connectivity but UARTs.

It is required to have a WiFi connection to the Cloud (AWS via MQTT) that can be easily achieved using any ESP8266-based module, that exchange data with the MCU using a serial line.

Now the boss also want an Ethernet connection, as alternative to WiFi. I cannot find an Arduino-based module (to re-use most of the code) to act as an Ethernet gateway (like the ESP8266 module does).

I found only expensive and large Arduino boards with their shields, but not a simple stand-alone and programmable object with the secure-Ethernet Arduino libraries.

Any recommendations? I'm pretty sure most of IoT devices require more than WiFi only connection.

  • 2
    ESP8266’s younger but more powerful brother the ESP32 actually has built-in support for Ethernet, and there are a few boards out there which leverage it, including some with PoE. Non-exhaustive list: the WESP32, the Neonious One, various Olimex boards... Alternatively, there are W5500-based extensions for ESP8266 or ESP32. – jcaron Sep 28 '20 at 12:26
  • Thanks, the ESP32-POE Olimex board looks promising. I didn't look at ESP32 because in the Espressif product page is not mentioned anywhere it has Ethernet capabilities! – Mark Sep 28 '20 at 15:32
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    it only has a MAC so you still need a PHY, and of course not all versions have it (I believe the ESP32-S2 lacks Ethernet, for instance). I forgot the Lilygo TT-Go T-Internet-POE. There may be others, but they're slipping my mind... – jcaron Sep 28 '20 at 15:46

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