Join Types

End-devices can join a LoRaWAN® network using two methods:

Over-The-Air Activation (OTAA)

  • End-device transmits a Join Request to application server containing:
    • Globally unique end-device identifier (DevEUI)
    • Join server Extended Unique Identifier (JoinEUI)/Application identifier (AppEUI), and
    • Authentication with Application key (AppKey)
  • End-device receives Join Accept from the application server
  • End-device authenticates Join Accept
  • End-device decrypts Join Accept
  • End-device extracts and stores Device Address (DevAddr)
  • End-device derives security keys:
    • Network Session Key (NwkSKey)
    • Application Session Key (AppSKey)

Activation by Personalization (ABP)

  • The following information is configured at production time:
    • Device Address (DevAddr)
    • Network Session Key (NwkSKey)
    • Application Session Key (AppSKey)
  • No over the air handshaking
  • Device is ready to communicate on the network without any additional procedure

In production, we recommend you use OTAA. OTAA is more reliable since the activation will be confirmed and more secure. Session keys are agreed upon with every activation. ABP can be used when doing demos or workshops.

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