Archive

Posts Tagged ‘wifi’

littleBits CloudBit Wi-Fi Module Simplifies DIY IoT Designs

July 31st, 2014 No comments

littleBits Electronics is a company selling tiny modules that snap together with tiny magnets for prototyping called… littleBits. They do not require soldering, wiring, or programming, can be buttons, sensors, motors, etc…, and are the electronics equivalent of LEGO, and are suitable to 8 years old and older kids. The company have recently launched a new product called CloudBit, a module based on Freescale i.MX233 with Wi-Fi connectivity meant to be used/snapped with existing littleBits.

LittleBits_CloudBitCloudBit hardware specifications:

  • Processor – Freescale i.MX233 ARM926EJ-S processor  @ 454MHz
  • System Memory – 64MB of RAM;
  • Storage – microSD slot with included 4GB micro SD card pre-loaded with a customized Arch Linux ARM distribution
  • Connectivity – 802.11b/g Wi-Fi via included USB dongle
  • USB – micro USB port (for power only)
  • Connectors – 2x BitSnap connectors for LittleBits connectivity using i.MX233 ADC/DAC signals
  • Debugging – Pads for UART (3.3V, 8-N-1, 115,200 baud) to access the serial console  (bottom of the board)
  • Misc -Status LED, Setup button
  • Power – via USB (power module, wall adapter, and cable included)
  • Dimensions – 15 x 10 x 5mm
  • Weight – 154 grams

CloudBit also includes a USB power module, and a wall adapter with cable. It runs Arch Linux ARM and leverages node.js technologies. The overall system diagram can be found here.

This little module allows you to connect virtually any device to the Internet, such as a thermostat that turns on when it’s too hot or cold, a doorbell that send an SMS or an email, etc… All that “without programming, soldering or wiring required”, the company claims. So how do you control it? You can use IFTTT “If this then that” app to connect to online services such as Facebook, Gmail and Twitter, as well as compatible hardware such as Nest and Philips HUE. Although programming CloudBit is not required, more advanced users can still do with via the Cloud API or littleBits Arduino module.

Cloud Starter Bundle

Cloud Starter Bundle

If you are new to littleBits, the CloudBit won’t be useful by itself, and that’s why the company also offers a Cloud Starter Bundle with CloudBit, the USB power module and wall adapter, but also several littleBits modules namely a “long” LED, a button, a servo, a sound trigger, as well as a mounting board, a sort of breadboard for the company’s modules.

The cloudBit and littleBits can interact with the web and each other in three ways:

  • Bits to Web – Using hardware to communicate with web services and software
  • Web to Bits – Communicating events in the web to the CloudBit, using for example, the company’s Cloud Control or the third party IFTTT app.
  • Bits to Bits – Communicating from machine to machine

The company features several demo projects with instructions including a chicken feed monitoring system, a remote fish/pet feeder, a baby monitor, an SMS doorbell, etc… and they also provide a few IFTTT samples, as tutorials.

You can find all the documentation you need on CloudBit and Cloud Starter Bundles product pages, as well as purchase them respectively for $59 and $99, plus shipping.

Via LinuxGizmos

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Skytecx SK-R68b Android TV Box Comes with Three Wi-Fi Antennas

July 28th, 2014 3 comments

There’s now a pretty long list of Android media players powered by Rockchip RK3288, and they keep coming up. While I don’t cover most of them, Skytecx SK-R68b is a little more interesting because for some reasons, the manufacturer has decided to go with not only two, but three Wi-Fi antennas, and the product is the type that you place directly on top of your TV.

Skytecx_SK-R68bThe rest of the specifications looks pretty standard:

  • SoC – Rockchip RK3288 quad core CortexA17 @ 1.8 GHz with ARM Mali-T764 GPU
  • System Memory – 2GB DDR3
  • Storage – 8 to 32GB NAND flash (8GB by default) + micro SD card slot (up to 32 GB)
  • Connectivity – Gigabit Ethernet, dual band WiFi 802.11 b/g/n (2.4GHz/5GHz) and 802.11 a/c with triple Wi-Fi antennas, and Bluetooth 4.0
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI 2.0 output (female) up to 1080p (sic), AV output (3.5mm jack)
  • Video Codecs
    • Decoding – MPEG-1, MPEG-2, MPEG-4,H.263, H.264, H.265,AVS, VC-1, RV, VP6/VP8, Sorenson Spark, MVC
    • Encoding – H.264, H.265, VP8, MVC (1080p)
    • H.264, H.265 Data Rate – Up to 60Mbps
  • Audio Codecs/Formats – MP1, MP2, MP3, WMA, WAV, OGG, OGA, APE, FLAC, AAC, M4A, 3GPP
  • USB – 2x USB Host port
  • Power Supply – 5V/2A
  • Dimensions – N/A

A power adapter, an IR remote control, an HDMI cable, and user’s manual are included by default with the device, and optionally an AV cable, air mouse, and/or wireless mouse can be provided.

The box is listed on Aliexpress for about $100 including shipping. The seller, Skytecx, has zero feedback, but they might be the manufacturer of the device as they also have a page on ec21.com with the full name “Shenzhen Skytecx Electronic Co.Ltd”. Although the product is listed on Aliexpress, you should not expect the TV box to be available right now. The latest news about RK3288 products are that there are still quite a few software bugs, HDMI is not working properly right now, and HDMI 2.0 may not be supported at the beginning. Wi-Fi support may also be the part of the specs where specs could be wrong. I’ve seen boards with AP6330 or AP6635 Wi-Fi modules, but most sellers claim support for 802.11ac, which you won’t get with AP6330.

Unrelated, but useful, here’s a list of Ampak module features I found while looking up for AP6335: (Source: 1688.com)

  • AP6181: WiFi
  • AP6210: WiFi/BT4.0
  • AP6251: WiFi/GPS (GLNSS)
  • AP6330: WiFi 2.4G,5G/BT4.0/FM
  • AP6476: WiFi/BT4.0/FM/GPS (GLNSS)
  • AP6493: WiFi/BT4.0/NFC
  • AP6441: WiFi2.4G,5G/BT4.0/NFC
  • AP6234: WiFi2.4G,5G/BT4.0
  • AP6335: WiFi 11ac 2.4G,5G/BT4.0/FM

Provided this list is correct, that means only products based on AP6335 module will support 802.11ac, all others AP6xxx modules only support 802.11 b/g/n. There will probably be other 802.11ac modules from other brands though.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

ARM TechCon 2014 Schedule – 64-Bit, IoT, Optimization & Debugging, Security and More

July 23rd, 2014 No comments

ARM Technology Conference (TechCon) 2014 will take place on October 1 – 3, 2014, in Santa Clara, and as every year, there will be a conference with various sessions for suitable engineers and managers, as well as an exposition where companies showcase their latest ARM based products and solutions. The detailed schedule for the conference has just been made available. Last year,  there were 90 sessions organized into 15 tracks, but this year, despite received 300 applications,  the organizers decided to scale it down a bit, and there will be 75 session in the following 11 tracks:ARM_TechCon_2014

  • Chip Implementation
  • Debugging
  • Graphics
  • Heterogeneous Compute
  • New Frontiers
  • Power Efficiency
  • Safety and Security
  • Software Development and Optimization
  • Software Optimization for Infrastructure and Cloud
  • System Design
  • Verification

There are also some paid workshops that take all day with topics such as “Android (NDK) and ARM overview”, “ARM and the Internet of Things”, or “ARM Accredited Engineer Programs”.

As usual, I’ve gone through the schedule builder, and come up with some interesting sessions with my virtual schedule during the 3-day event:

Wednesday – 1st of October

In this session, Dr. Saied Tehrani will discuss how Spansion’s approach to utilize the ARM Cortex-R line of processors to deliver energy efficient solutions for the automotive MCU market has led the company to become a vital part of the movement toward connectivity in cars. Beginning with an overview of the auto industry’s innovation and growth in connected car features, he will explain how these systems require high performance processing to give drivers the fluid experience they expect. Highlights in security and reliability with ARM Cortex-R, including Spansion’s Traveo Family of MCU’s will also be presented.

HEVC and VP9 are the latest video compression standards that significantly improves compression ratio compared to its widely used predecessors H.264 and VP8 standard. In this session the following will be discussed:

  • The market need for GPU accelerated HEVC and VP9 decoders
  • Challenges involved in offloading video decoding algorithms to a GPU, and how Mali GPU is well suited to tackle them
  • Improvement in power consumption and performance of Mali GPU accelerated decoder
  • big.LITTLE architecture and CCI/CCN’s complementing roles in improving the GPU accelerated video decoder’s power consumption

ARM’s Cortex-M family of embedded processors are delivering energy-efficient, highly responsive solutions in a wide variety of application areas right from the lowest-power, general-purpose microcontrollers to specialised devices in advanced SoC designs. This talk will examine how ARM plans to grow the ARM Cortex-M processor family to provide high performance together with flexible memory systems, whilst still maintaining the low-power, low-latency characteristics of ARM’s architecture v7M.

IoT devices as embedded systems cover a large range of devices from low-power, low-performance sensors to high-end gateways. This presentation will highlight the elements an embedded engineer needs to analyse before selecting the MCU for his design. Software is fundamental in IoT: from networking to power management, from vertical market protocols to IoT Cloud protocols and services, from programming languages to remote firmware update, these are all design criteria influencing an IoT device design. Several challenges specific to IoT design will be addressed:

  • Code size and RAM requirements for the major networking stacks
  • Optimizing TCP/IP resources versus performance
  • Using Java from Oracle or from other vendors versus C
  • WiFi (radio only or integrated module)
  • Bluetooth (Classis versus LE) IoT protocols

Thursday – 2nd of October

Amongst ARM’s IP portfolio we have CPUs, GPUs, video engines and display processors, together with fabric interconnect and POP IP, all co-designed, co-verified and co-optimized to produce energy-efficient implementations. In this talk, we will present some of the innovations ARM has introduced to reduce memory bandwidth and system power, both in the IP blocks themselves and the interactions between them, and how this strategy now extends to the new ARM Mali display processors.

Designing a system that has to run on coin cells? There’s little accurate information available about how these batteries behave in systems that spend most of their time sleeping. This class will give design guidance on the batteries, plus examine the many other places power leakages occur, and offer some mitigation strategies.

64-bit is the “new black” across the electronics industry, from server to mobile devices. So if you are building or considering building an ARMv8-A SoC, you shall attend this talk to either check that you know everything or find out what you shall know! Using the ARMv8 Juno ARM Development Platform (ADP) as reference, this session will cover:

  • The ARMv8-A hardware compute subsystem architecture for Cortex-A57, Cortex-A53 & Mali based SoC
  • The associated ARMv8-A software stack
  • The resources available to 64-bit software developers
  • Demonstration of the Android Open Source Project for ARMv8 running on Juno.

Rapid prototyping platforms have become a standard path to develop initial design concepts. They provide an easy-to-use interface with a minimal learning curve and allow ideas to flourish and quickly become reality. Transitioning from a simple, easy-to-use rapid prototyping system can be daunting, but shouldn’t be. This session presents options for starting with mbed as a prototyping environment and moving to full production with the use of development hardware, the open-source mbed SDK and HDK, and the rich ARM ecosystem of hardware and software tools.Attendees will learn how to move from the mbed online prototyping environment to full production software, including:

  • Exporting from mbed to a professional IDE
  • Full run-time control with debugging capabilities
  • Leveraging an expanded SDK with a wider range of integration points
  • Portability of applications from an mbed-enabled HDK to your custom hardware

Statistics is often perceived as scary and dull… but not when you apply it to optimizing your code! You can learn so much about your system and your application by using relatively simple techniques that there’s no excuse not to know them.This presentation will use no slides but will step through a fun and engaging demo of progressively optimizing OpenCL applications on a ARM-powered Chromebook using IPython. Highlights will include analyzing performance counters using radar diagrams, reducing performance variability by optimizing for caches and predicting which program transformations will make a real difference before actually implementing them.

Friday – 3rd of October

The proliferation of mobile devices has led to the need of squeezing every last micro-amp-hour out of batteries. Minimizing the energy profile of a micro-controller is not always straight forward. A combination of sleep modes, peripheral control and other techniques can be used to maximize battery life. In this session, strategies for optimizing micro-controller energy profiles will be examined which will extend battery life while maintaining the integrity of the system. The techniques will be demonstrated on an ARM Cortex-M processor, and include a combination of power modes, software architecture design techniques and various tips and tricks that reduce the energy profile.

One of the obstacles to IoT market growth is guaranteeing interoperability between devices and services . Today, most solutions address applications requirements for specific verticals in isolation from others. Overcoming this shortcoming requires adoption of open standards for data communication, security and device management. Economics, scalability and usability demand a platform that can be used across multiple applications and verticals. This talk covers some of the key standards like constrained application protocol (CoAP), OMA Lightweight M2M and 6LoWPAN. The key features of these standards like Caching Proxy, Eventing, Grouping, Security and Web Resource Model for creating efficient, secure, and open standards based IoT systems will also be discussed.

Virtual Prototypes are gaining widespread acceptance as a strategy for developing and debugging software removing the dependence on the availability of hardware. In this session we will explore how a virtual prototype can be used productively for software debug. We will explain the interfaces that exist for debugging and tracing activity in the virtual prototype, how these are used to attach debug and analysis tools and how these differ from (and improve upon) equivalent hardware capabilities. We will look in depth at strategies for debug and trace and how to leverage the advantages that the virtual environment offers. The presentation will further explore how the virtual prototype connects to hardware simulators to provide cross-domain (hardware and software) debug. The techniques will be illustrated through case studies garnered from experiences working with partners on projects over the last few years.

Attendees will learn:

  • How to set up a Virtual Prototype for debug and trace
  • Connecting debuggers and other analysis tools.
  • Strategies for productive debug of software in a virtual prototype.
  • How to setup trace on a virtual platform, and analysing the results.
  • Hardware in the loop: cross domain debug.
  • Use of Python to control the simulation and trace interfaces for a virtual platform.
  • 14:30 – 15:20 – GPGPU on ARM Systems by Michael Anderson, Chief Scientist, The PTR Group, Inc.

ARM platforms are increasingly coupled with high-performance Graphics Processor Units (GPUs). However the GPU can do more than just render graphics, Today’s GPUs are highly-integrated multi-core processors in their own right and are capable of much more than updating the display. In this session, we will discuss the rationale for harnessing GPUs as compute engines and their implementations. We’ll examine Nvidia’s CUDA, OpenCL and RenderScript as a means to incorporate high-performance computing into low power draw platforms. This session will include some demonstrations of various applications that can leverage the general-purpose GPU compute approach.

Abstract currently not available.

That’s 14 sessions out of the 75 available, and you can make your own schedule depending on your interests with the schedule builder.

In order to attend ARM TechCon 2014, you can register online, although you could always show up and pay the regular on-site, but it will cost you, or your company, extra.

Super Early Bird Rare
Ended June 27
Early Bird Rate
Ends August 8
Advanced Rate
Ends September 19
Regular Rate
VIP $999 $1,299 $1,499 $1,699
All-Access $799 $999 $1,199 $1,399
General Admission $699 $899 $1,099 $1,299
AAE Training $249 $299 $349 $399
Software Developers Workshop $99 $149 $199 $249
Expo FREE FREE $29 $59

There are more types of pass this year, but the 2-day and 1-day pass have gone out of the window. The expo pass used to be free at any time, but this year, you need to register before August 8. VIP and All-access provides access to all events, General Admission excludes AAE workshops and software developer workshops, AAE Training and Software Developers Workshop passes give access to the expo plus specific workshops. Further discounts are available for groups, up to 30% discount.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Amptek iCon is an ARM Cortex M3 Board for IoT Running uCLinux (Crowdfunding)

June 28th, 2014 No comments

Up until now, the only company I ever heard running Linux on ARM Cortex M3/M4 was EmCraft Systems with their system-on-modules and development kits based on Freescale Kinetis, STMicro STM32 and Actel Smartfusion micro-controllers. But there’s now another option thanks to Ampek Technologies, a Canadian based company funded in 2002, and their iCon (Internet Connectivity) board featuring NXP LPC1788 Cortex M3 connected to 64MB RAM which is plenty enough to run uCLinux. The board can be used for applications such as industrial control systems, wireless sensors, or smart home appliances.

iCon_Linux_Board

The iCon board specifications are as follows:

  • MCU – NXP LPC1788 ARM Cortex-M3 MCU @ 120MHz with 512 KB flash memory, and 96 KB SRAM
  • System Memory – 64MB SDRAM (external chip)
  • Storage – 32MB flash for firmware
  • Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.0. Ethernet is supported via an add-on module
  • USB – USB 2.0 host port, mini-USB debug port
  • Other ports and headers:
    • CAN port (+5V ground connector)
    • RS-485 port (+5V ground connector)
    • JTAG interface
    • 2x expansion headers at the back of the board with access to I2C, SPI, UART, RMII, PWM, GPIO, 10-bit DAC, 12-bit ADC, and 16-bit RGB LCD interface.
  • Misc -RTC with battery backup
  • Power – 5V DC
  • Power Consumption @ 5V – 260mA after boot (idle), 390mA with WiFi 802.11g, 400mA with WiFi 802.11g and Bluetooth
  • Dimensions – 86 x 54mm
iCon Boards and LCD Modules

iCon Boards and LCD Modules

The company can also provides 4.3″ (480×272) and 7″ (800×480) TFT LCD modules with a resistive touchscreen. The board runs uClinux 2.6.33-ARM1, and includes support for BlueZ, TCP/IP, WPA, Boa web server, and Inadyn DDNS client. There’s no word about documentation and source code.

The board appears to be fully developed, and the company has made a demo with OWI-535 robotic arm controlled wirelessly by a web interface running on the iCon.

Amptek iCon is now on Kickstarter, and you can pledge $109 CAD (~$102 USD) to get the board, and up to $199 CAD for iCon + the 7″ touchscreen LCD display. The Ethernet add-on board shown in the demo is not available in any perks.

With 7 days to go and only, around $3,500 CAD pledged out of a $55,000 CAD, it seems unlikely the crowdfunding campaign will succeed, but the boards will certainly be available (in quantities) afterwards. You can find more details on Amptek Technologies website.

Via LinuxGizmos

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Review of Broadlink SP2 Wi-Fi Smart Plug

June 27th, 2014 15 comments

I have received Broadlink SP2 Wi-Fi smart socket for Android and iOS thanks to GearBest, a Chinese e-retailer, that was kind enough to send a sample for review. I’ll start by showing some pictures of the package and device, and report the results of my review with an Android phone (ThL W200).

Broadlink SP2 Unboxing Pictures

The company send me the parcel via DHL, and I received in the package below, the top with the picture, and the bottom with specifications in Chinese.

Broadlink SP2 package (Click to Enlarge)

Broadlink SP2 package (Click to Enlarge)

There’s only the smart plug in the package. The top is a universal plug, but the bottom is a Australian/ Chinese plug, so most people would need a wall adapter. It support 110 to 240V AC up to 10 amperes, consumes less than 0.5W without load, and it designed to handle 50,000 on/off events. The thing that surprised me was the size of the plug at first, and it felt larger than I expected.

Broadlink_SP2_Wi-Fi_Smart_SocketThere’s also a user’s manual with the box, but in Chinese only, you can read download it here and there.

As usual I tried to open the device, but the 4 screw are a bit special (like a slotted head but full in the middle, not sure how these are called), and I could only remove 2 screws with the tool at my disposal, so eventually I had to give up…

Broadlink SP2 Android Review

The first thing to do is to download and install e-Control app for Android or iOS either using the QR code on the package, or redirecting your mobile’s browser to the broadlink.apk,  Now you can plug Broadlink SP2 into your wall socket, and start the app.

Broadink_SP2_SetupThe initial setup simply consist of locating your Wi-Fi router, and input the Wi-Fi password, and after you’ll be shown your device with a pre-set name in Chinese, which you can change to your liking. I called it “Bedroom”. The most basic mode of operating is to use the On/Off button in the app (Grey: off, Green: On), or use the physical button to manually turn on or off the relay.

There’s also a timer function where you can set the On and Off time as shown below. You’ll also be notified when the relay goes on or off, with the downside that notifications are in Chinese…

Timer Settings (Click to Enlarge)

Timer Settings (Click to Enlarge)

The real-time power in the screenshot above is zero, because there was no load. So I connected a water boiler to give it a try…

Broadlink_SP2_Water_Boiler

And it works nicely, and you can start the boiler a few minutes before you get up, and the “real-time” power consumption updated every 5 seconds or so, shows a realistic value of about 700W in the boiling phase. I wish it could be possible to get an alert when the water is ready, and the power drops below a threshold, as sometimes I start the boiler, and forget about it….

Broadlink_SP2_Power_Consumption

In the control section of the app, you’ll see “Watch TV” and “Smart Living Room” which are scenes that you can setup if you have multiple smart plug. For example “Watch TV” could turn off the lights, close the curtains, and turn on TV.

The “Power” button will show a longer term history of the power consumption. It test that part, I’ve connected the smart plug to the main socket of my office. I started my computer at about 9:00, it did a full backup just before 10 which explains the spike in power consumption (250W), and at noon, I went into suspend mode where it drops to around 25W) for sometimes, and etc… The chart shows clearly the few breaks I had during the day, until I turn off my computer around 22h30.

One day of Office Power Consumption (Click to Enlarge)

One day of Office Power Consumption (Click to Enlarge)

The resolution in this view is only 30 minutes, and there’s no way to zoom on a full day, and it only shows about 3 hours of data on the screen in the 24h view. However it gathers data over 24 hours, and you can just scroll to check the power consumption chart. The scale in Watt is shown on the left, but as you scroll it disappear which is rather annoying.

You also access weekly, monthly and yearly views that show the appliance working time, the cost, and total power consumption. The “electricity price” is set in the setting menu, and there are options with off-peak and peak times. It will show RMB/unit price, but just put the value for your currency, in my case 4 Baht per unit. The whole application is rather in Chinglish than English, so degree should read as unit or kWh.

Broadlink_SP2_Electricity_Price_SettingsI could not find the Auto Home, Auto Away, and Auto Save functions advertised for the product, but you may need to login to QQ and Weibo to access these, and I haven’t tested that part… The cloud backup function provided to let you load your settings and data to the cloud certainly requires login to one of these two Chinese social networks.

In conclusion, Broadlink SP2 does the job it’s supposed to do, and I could not find issues with the hardware. The Android app is also not too bad, but a few extra features could be nice such as a more detailed 24h chart with the ability to zoom in/out, some extra notifications, better software localization and so on.

If you are interested, you could purchase Broadlink SP2 for $39.03 from GearBest which provided the device for this review, and you could use May05 coupon to get an extra 5% discount on Broadlink SP2 ($37) or any other products on their website. You can also find Broadlink SP2 on DealExtreme for $44 or Aliexpress starting at $39.99. All prices include shipping.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Soap is a Touchscreen Enabled Router Supporting Gigabit Ethernet and Lots of Wireless Standards (Crowdfunding)

June 12th, 2014 2 comments

Soap is a strange creature, and I’m not convinced there are that many use cases for such hardware, but I find it interesting that the developers decided to pack a Freescale i.MX6 Solo/Dual or Quad SoC powered Android 4.4 tablet and a router supporting five Gigabit Etherner ports, as well as WiFI 802.11ac, Wi-0Fi 802.11 b/g/n,  Zigbee, Z-wave, Bluetooth 4.0 (BLE), Insteon RF, X10, 433Mhz, NFC, and infrared into one and only device which they call an “Intelligent Home Management Hub”.  It’s also complete with an HDMI output port so that you can use it as a media player.

Soap_Router_Tablet_Automation_Gateway_STB

Let’s go through the specifications for the four version this little monster (Soap Solo, Soap Dual, Soap Quad, and Soap 8.4):

  • SoC
    • Soap Solo – Freescale i.MX6 Solo single ARM Cortex A9 @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC880 3D GPU
    • Soap Dual – Freescale i.MX6 Dual dual ARM Cortex A9 @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC2000 3D GPU
    • Soap Quad and 8.4 – Freescale i.MX6 Quad quad ARM Cortex A9 @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC2000 3D GPU
  • System Memory – Soap Solo: 1GB DDR3 @ 1066MHz, Others: 2GB DDR3 @ 1066MHz
  • Storage
    • Soap Solo – 8GB internal storage,
    • Soap Dual and Quad – 32GB internal storage
    • Soap 8.4 – 32 GB internal storage, and 128GB SSD
    • All – Internal micro SD card slot and SATA II connections
  • Display
    • Soap Solo/Dual/Quad – 7″ TFT LCD display; SVGA resolution (800×600)
    • Soap 8.4 – 8.4 TFTP LCD display; SVGA resolution (800×600)
  • Connectivity – 1x WAN Eternet port, 4x LAN Ethernet ports, 4 SMA antenna ports for a dual band 802.11ac Wi-Fi 4×4 MIMO module (Up to 1.3 Gb/s), and a dual band 802.11 b/g/n Wi-Fi module. Bluetooth 4.0 LE, Zigbee, Z-Wave, Insteon RF, X10 RF, 433MHz RF and NFC
  • USB – 1x USB 2.0, 2x USB 3.0
  • Video & Audio Output – HDMI
  • Misc – Infrared sensor
Android and iOS Apps are Available for Soap Routers

Android and iOS Apps are Available for Soap Routers

The Freescale i.MX6 is brought to the device via Congatec SoM, probably their conga-qmx6 Q7 modules. Beside the Android kitkat tablet, router, home automation, and media player applications possible with this device, the developers are also promoting the device for its parental control abilities, controlling when you kids can play games by the touch of a button, preventing them to access not-safe-for-kids websites, and so on.

The project is now on Indiegogo (Fixed funding) where Soap’s designers plan to gather $42.000 or more to start production. Soap Solo starts at $240, Soap Dual at $280, Soap Quad at $360, and the most expensive option, Soap 8.4, will go for $500. Shipping to North America is $6, and $35 for the rest of the world. Delivered is scheduled for February 2015. Please note it’s not the first time the project is crowd-funded, as it was on KickStarter last March with perks at a much lower price point.

Via Hack a Day

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter

Meet Samsung Smart Bike fitted with an Arduino, a Rear Camera, Lasers and More

June 12th, 2014 1 comment

Samsung Maestros Academy has introduced a Smart Bike prototype integrating various “smart” components within its aluminum frame, such as an Arduino board connected to a Wi-Fi + Bluetooth module, a battery, four laser projectors, and a digital camera controlled by a Samsung smartphone.
Samsung_Smart_Bike

The camera is fitted at the back just under the seat, and allows the riders to have a real-time rear view image on the phone. The four lasers are used to create a virtual bike lane in case a real one is missing, and remind other drivers to keep a safe distance to your bicycle. The bike can also detect ambient conditions using the smartphone sensors, and modify its behavior. For example, it can switch on or off the laser beams depending on the brightness sensor data from the smartphone. Each bike also tracks daily routes of the riders using GPS, and can let local authorities know where bicycle traffic is most intense, and where they should build bike lanes.

For information is available on www.maestrosacademy.it/progetto-sbike.

Digg This
Reddit This
Stumble Now!
Buzz This
Vote on DZone
Share on Facebook
Bookmark this on Delicious
Kick It on DotNetKicks.com
Share on LinkedIn
Bookmark this on Technorati
Post on Twitter