Rockchip has announced a new WiFi SoC for IoT applications claiming 85% lower power consumption compared to competing WiFi solutions, which allows cell-coin battery powered WiFi systems thanks to a power consumption equivalent to what you’d get with a Bluetooth 4.0 LE system.
Rockchip RKi6000 is said to consume 20 mA (@ 3.3V) during Rx operations. The SoC has been developed with an unnamed third party, and can achieve a lower power consumption thanks to three improvements:
- Improvement of RF transceiver architecture. The architecture can greatly reduce the active power consumption of IoT smart devices during continuous data transfer. Ultra low power can be achieved both in work and standby mode. Dozens of international patents have been filed for this technology.
- Adaptive dynamic power control technology. Power efficiency is optimized in different working modes and the total power consumption is reduced greatly in different application scenarios by adjusting the chip’s power configuration dynamically so that better energy efficiency can be achieved.
- RKi6000 can keep the device online without waking up the host processor. It can reduce the wake up time and simplify the application power control design. Since for most IoT applications, the device should be kept in sleep mode and turned back on when needed, the reduction of wake-up time further lowers the power consumption and extends battery life.
Anandtech also compared Rockchip RKi6000 to other WiFi solutions, as well as Bluetooth 4.0 and Zigbee chips by TI and CSR, and if numbers are true, then Rockchip may have disrupted the market provided the price is right.
Rockchip did not mention transmit power at all in the press release, so either Anandtech obtained this info from Rockchip, or they just assumed Tx and Rx power would be similar.
RKi6000 is expected to be used in smart wearable devices, consumer electronics, mainstream appliances, home safety, automation systems, automobiles and medical equipment. Pricing information has not been released, but RKi6000 will become available in Q3 2015.
Thanks to Nanik for the tip