Wireless Gecko Series 2 MCU Delivers Extended Range, HW Security

Silicon Labs are recently introduced their Wireless Gecko Series 2 Arm Cortex-M33 MCU family that offers Bluetooth, Zigbee, and Thread connectivity for smart home, commercial and industrial IoT applications.

The new family includes a dedicated security core as well as an on-chip radio which according to the company delivers 2.5 times the wireless range of competing solutions.

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Some of the highlights of the new wireless microcontroller includes:

  • 80 MHz Arm Cortex-M33 core with TrustZone technology
  • High RF performance with +20 dBm output power and up to +124.5 dB link budget
  • Low active current (50.9 µA/MHz)
  • Security
    • Dedicated security core for faster, lower-power encryption
    • Built-in true random number generator (TRNG)
    • Secure boot loading
    • Secure debug access control
  • Tiny 4×4 mm QFN package
  • Lower BOM count and system cost with fewer matching components and no need for external inductors or power amplifiers
  • Flexible pre-certified modules based on EFR32xG21 SoCs planned for Q3

Silicon Labs will start by launching two Wireless Gecko Series 2 MCU sub-families best suited for line-powered IoT products including gateways, hubs, lights, voice assistants and smart electric meters:

  • EFR32MG21 Mighty Gecko SoCs supporting multiprotocol, Zigbee, Thread and Bluetooth mesh networking
  • EFR32BG21 Blue Gecko SoCs dedicated to Bluetooth Low Energy and Bluetooth mesh.

“Line-powered” means the first generation of Wireless Gecko Series 2 is not suitable, or at least not ideal, for battery-powered systems

The company is also offering the EFR32xG21 Wireless Starter Kit with support for Bluetooth, Zigbee, Thread, and Multiprotocol Zigbee/Bluetooth software stacks in order to get started as quick as possible.

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The kit includes 3x wireless starter kit mainboards, 3x EFR32MG21 2.4 GHz +20 dBm radio boards, 3x EFR32MG21 2.4 GHz +10 dBm radio boards, an AA battery board, cables, and EFR32MG Getting Started Card.

Development can be performed with the Simplicity Studio IDE including a unified wireless development kit, SDKs, energy profiler, network analysis, application demos, and mobile apps.

Silicon Labs EFR32MG21 and EFR32BG21 SoCs are available now starting a $3.36 in sample quantities, and the Starter Kit can be purchased for $479. Visit the chips’ product page for further details.

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