In optical camera communications (OCC), the provision of both flicker-free illumination and high data rates are challenging issues, which can be addressed by utilizing the rolling-shutter (RS) property of the image sensors as the receiver (Rx). In this paper, we propose an RS-based multiple-input multiple-output OCC scheme for the Internet of things (IoT) application. A simplified design of multi-channel transmitter (Tx) using a 7.2 × 7.2 cm2 small 8 × 8 distributed light emitting diode (LED) array, based on grouping of LEDs, is proposed for flicker-free transmission. We carry out an experimental investigation of the indoor OCC system by employing a Raspberry Pi camera as the Rx, with RS capturing mode. Despite the small area of the display, flicker-free communication links within the range of 20–100 cm are established with data throughput of 960 to 120 bps sufficient for IoT. A method to extend link spans up to 1.8 m and the data throughput to 13.44 kbps using different configurations of multi-channel Tx is provided. The peak signal-to-noise ratio of ~14 and 16 dB and the rate of successfully received bits of 99.4 and 81% are measured for the shutter speeds of 200 and 800 µs for a link span of 1 m, respectively.