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I am building a drone that should connect to LTE internet with waveshares SIM7600 HAT.

Every guide I see online for using the HAT as a LTE modem is using a USB connection between the PI and the HAT.

My question is, is it possible to connect my PI to internet using the GPIO connection? Or do I have to use a USB connection for this purpose?

Using a USB for this will change the whole design of the case that is holding the build, and is very much unwanted, also it can raise concerns about accidental disconnection of the usb due to high velocity movements of the drone.

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I know it's been almost a year, but I signed up to answer you since no one else was. Yes it's possible to use a Pi HAT and communicate using GPIO. I'm currently using this HAT: https://www.waveshare.com/wiki/SIM7600E-H_4G_HAT

Communication is over UART using AT commands. In my case the serial port I need to use is /dev/ttyS0 (Pi 4B), though it may be different for other Pis (especially a Pi-Zero).

The easiest way I've seen to use the HAT is to download the ppp package (sudo apt install ppp). Before configuring ppp, connect to your HAT using something UART capable. I've been using screen (sudo apt install screen). Run the command sudo screen /dev/ttyS0 115200 and type "at" followed by the enter key. You should get an "OK" repsonse. If you don't, you need to set up your UART properly (ctrl+a,k,y to kill the screen).

Once you get a response (i.e. UART is working), you can configure ppp by using the instructions here (adapt to your situation): https://www.waveshare.com/wiki/SIM868_PPP_Dail-up_Networking. Keep in mind that, by default, the UART for this particular chip/HAT runs at 115200 so that will be your maximum internet connection speed too. You can change that later using other AT commands. See the AT command manual for this particular chip (SIM7600): https://www.waveshare.com/w/upload/5/54/SIM7500_SIM7600_Series_AT_Command_Manual_V1.08.pdf.

Hope that helps and it's not too late.

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