After RFDuino, here’s another tiny low cost Bluetooth 4.0 SMART development board compatible with Arduino. BLEduino board is the merger of Arduino Leonardo and Bluetooth module, features Atmel ATmega32u4 MCU, Nordic Semi nRF8001 for BLE, and includes an on-board USB programming interface.
Key features of BLEduino board:
- MCU – Atmel ATmega32u4 @ 16 MHz with 32 KB flash, 2.5 KB SRAM, and 1 KB EEPROM
- Power Supply – 5V. Onboard 5V & 3.3V regulators
- 21x GPIO Pins
- 6x PWM Channels
- 12x Analog Input Channels
- Serial Communication – UART, SPI, I2C
- LED – RX/TX for serial communication, LED for Bluetooth connectivity
- Bluetooth – Version 4.0 with Low Energy sypport via Nordic Semi nRF8001. Expected range: at least 24 meters
- Dimensions – Around 22.8 x 43.2 mm
Kytelab, the company behind BLEduino, also provides “Shield-Shield”, a baseboard that translates BLEduino’s pin layout into the traditional Arduino layout, and allows you to use Arduino shields.
An iPhone app is currently available, and Android support will come shortly after Android 4.3 SDK is released. BLEduino is open source hardware, which means the smartphone apps, the hardware files (schematics pcb layout, gerber), and the firmware will be publicly available once development is complete.
According to Kytelab the main difference with RFDuino are as follows:
Differences between us and the RFduino
- 3x the amount of GPIO pins available (21 instead of 7)
- The RFduino requires an extra board to be programmed, ours doesn’t.
- Uses Arduino hardware (ATmega32u4 and bootloader) so all your arduino sketches are guaranteed to work.
- Our board can do mouse and keyboard emulation right out of the box because its uses the same MCU and libraries as the Arduino Leonardo.
- Ours is compatible with nearly all Arduino shields, using our shield-shield attachment.
- Instead of multiple apps for multiple projects, we have an all-in-one sexy iPhone app that you can use for everything.
The project is now on Kickstarter to raise funds for mass-production. You watch the introduction, and all the cool things (control LED & relays, gather sensors’ data, use it as a game controller, and more) you can do with BLEduino.
The lowest pledge currently available ($29) will get you a BLEduino, but this is an early bird pledge, and standard price will be $34. If you also want the “Shield Shield” to have a 100% software and hardware compatible Arduino board, the pledge is $44. They are also other pledges such as the “MAD SCIENTIST KIT” with more accessories to play with. Shipping is free to the US, and $5 to $30 to the rest of the world depending on the pledge. Delivery is expected in November 2013.
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.