Babuino Stick and Babuino Board are tiny low cost Arduino-compatible USB dongle and board featuring Atmel AVR MCU, and Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR connectivity. Both have basically the same hardware, but Babuino Stick is more suited to control a computer or Smart TV via your smartphone, and Babuino Board can be used for robotics and automation projects. The device can also be used to control your smartphone (e.g. to write SMS) from your PC or Mac.
Here are the specifications of these “Babuini”:
- MCU – Atmel ATXMega128A1 @ 32 MHz with 128KB flash program memory, 8KB boot code section, and 8KB SRAM.
- Master/Slave selectable Bluetooth 2.0 + EDR module
- Infrared transmitter and receiver
- USB – micro USB (board) and USB port (stick)
- User and reset push-buttons
- Headers (Board only) – ICSP pins, ADC & DAC, PWM, I2C & SMBus, SPI and UART
- LEDs – Bluetooth and User LED for both, plus Bluetooth TX + RX for Babuino board
- Power – USB or, for Babuino Board, external 7-12V powered board
- Dimensions – Board: 53mm x 22mm | Stick: 47mm x 19mm
Babuino is Arduino compatible board, the firmware is based on LUFA (Lightweight USB Framework for AVRs), and you’ll be able to use Arduino sketches with boards.
The first time I saw the promotion video below, and the demo showing how to control a TV or computer with your smartphone by connecting the device, I found the product might not be that useful, because you could simply do the same things with software solutions such as DroidMote without any extra hardware. But I’ve been told since it does not need extra drivers or software on the target device, it can be used with a company laptop with limited permissions, and also works for BIOS and Boot selection, which can be useful for maintenance tasks. They also have a nice list of software for remote terminal access, bar code scanner, etc… Yet Babuino board seems more interesting as you can integrate it into robotics projects where you need both Bluetooth connectivity and a micro-controller to control other hardware bits such as motors.
Babuino will be open source hardware, and the source code and binary files for Babuino firmware, Android apps, and Linux/Mac here once the funding is complete. Hardware files should also be made available, but I could not find placeholder for now.
OpenJungle is looking for funds for mass-product, so they’ve just launched an Indiegogo campaign. You can get Babuino Stick or Board for $25 (Early bird), plus $5 for shipping worldwide. European residents will also have to pay a bit more, as Spanish VAT (21%) must also be added to the price. After the early bird offers expired, you’ll need to pledge $35.
Further information is available in OpenJungle.cc.
Jean-Luc started CNX Software in 2010 as a part-time endeavor, before quitting his job as a software engineering manager, and starting to write daily news, and reviews full time later in 2011.