Ameba Z2 IoT Board Features Realtek RTL8720CM Armv8-M KM4 Secure Wireless MCU

Ameba Z2 IoT Development Board

In 2016 we discovered Realtek Ameba wireless microcontrollers combining an Arm Cortex-M3 core with WiFi connectivity, and that could potentially become an ESP8266 competitor with modules selling for as low as $2. But the solution never really took off, because it was about the same price as ESP8266, and the latter already had a solid software ecosystem and community. But RealTek has now introduced a new Ameba Z2 IoT development board powered by RTL8720CM microcontroller featuring an Armv8-M KM4 core clocked at 100 MHz. What’s an Arm KM4 core you may ask? Seeed Studio informed me Arm and RealTek worked together on the KM4 core, so it looks like a custom Armv8-M microcontroller. Ameba Z2 IoT Development Board Ameba Z2 (ZII) specifications: Wireless MCU – Realtek RTL8720CM single core Armv8-M KM4 core @ 100MHz with 4.2MB internal RAM, WiFi and Bluetooth radios Storage – 2MB external flash on module Connectivity Wi-Fi – 802.11 b/g/n 1×1 Wi-Fi 4 (20/40MHz) with PCB …

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$15 TTGO T-Call Board Combines ESP32 WiFi & Bluetooth SoC with SIM800 GPRS Module

TTGO T-call Pinout Diagram

LilyGo has launched several TTGO boards usually based on Espressif ESP8266 or ESP32 over the years. Here’s another that could be useful if 2G cellular networks have not sunset in your country: TTGO T-Call. The new board combines ESP32 WiFi & Bluetooth WiSoC with SIMCom SIM800L GPRS module, and also happens to rely on a USB-C port for power and programming instead of the more common micro USB port on this type of hardware. TTGO T-Call board (BLINK_V1.3) specifications: Wireless Module – ESP32-WROVER-B based on ESP32 dual core Xtensa processor @ 240MHz with 520kB SRAM on-chip, 4MB QSPI flash, 8MB PSRAM Connectivity – WiFi 4 802.11 b/g/n (2.4 GHz) up to 150 Mbps Bluetooth 4.2 Classic + LE Cellular  – 2G GSM/GPRS via SIMcom SIM800L module + Nano SIM card slot USB – 1x USB-C for power and programming (via CP2104) Expansion – 2x 21-pin headers with UART, SPI, SDIO, I2C, PWM, I2S, IRGPIO, capacitor touch sensor, ADC, DAC Misc …

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Obsidian ESP32 Board Follows Raspberry Pi Model A Form Factor (Crowdfunding)

Obsidian ESP32 Raspberry Pi Board

When Thomas McKahan‏ had been playing with ESP32 for a while, he found the need to use Raspberry Pi HAT boards and enclosure with his new hardware,  so he went ahead and designed his own ESP32 board compatible with Raspberry Pi accessories, and following the smaller Raspberry Pi Model A / 3 Model A+ form factor. Obsidian ESP32 specifications: Wireless module – Espressif Systems  ESP32-WROVER-B 802.11 b/g/n WiFi + Bluetooth 4.2 / BLE module with 16 MB flash, 8 MB PSRAM USB – 1x micro USB port for power and programming Audio – 3.5mm TRS audio jack connected to ESP32 DACs Expansion 40-pin GPIO header compatible with popular HAT expansion boards with 3.3 V signalling,  I²S for audio DAC, I²C and SPI, Serial UART available on header or via microUSB, I²C GPIO expander with interrupts & address selection 8-pim unpopulated header from remaining I/Os accessible through GPIO expander 5-pin unpopulated header with analog inputs connecting to the ESP32’s SENSOR_VP and …

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Espressif ESP32-S2 Secure WiFi MCU Comes with an Xtensa LX7 Core @ 240 MHz

ESP32-S2

Espressif Systems has unveiled a new ESP32 WiFi MCU based on Cadence (previously Tensilica) Xtensa LX7 core instead of the usual Xtensa LX6 core(s). ESP32-S2 is powered by a single Xtensa LX7 core clocked at 240 MHz, supports Wi-Fi HT40 @ 2.4 GHz, and provides up to 43 GPIOs. Espressif ESP32-S2 specifications: CPU – Cadence Xtensa single-core 32-bit LX7 microcontroller @ up to 240 MHz, and ultra-low-power co-processor System Memory – 320 kB SRAM, external SPIRAM support up to 128 MB in total, 16 KB RTC memory Storage –  128 kB ROM, up to 1 GB of external flash support Connectivity Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n 1×1 transmit and receive with HT40 support with data rate up to 150 Mbps Support for TCP/IP networking, ESP-MESH networking, TLS 1.0, 1.1 and 1.2 and other networking protocols over Wi-Fi Support Time-of-Flight (TOF) measurements with normal Wi-Fi packets I/O & peripherals 43x programmable GPIOs 14x capacitive touch sensing IOs SPI, I2C, I2S, UART, ADC/DAC, and …

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Low Power TinyPICO ESP32 Board Ships with Micropython (Crowdfunding)

TinyPICO ESP32 Micropython

There are so many ESP32 boards available now, so why bother with another ones. Some of the key selling points of TinyPICO are that it is really small at 32 x 18 mm, it’s easy to use out of the box with MicroPython firmware pre-loaded, and supports LiPo batteries with an optimized power path for low-power battery usage. The developer, named Unexpected Maker, also provides various shields for TinyPICO adding a display, sensors, an audio amplifier, an RTC, Grove headers, and more. TinyPICO board specifications: System-in-Package – Espressif Systems ESP32-PICO-D4 SiP with ESP32 dual-core processor operating at 240 MHz, 4 MB SPI flash External System Memory – 4 MB PSRAM Connectivity – 2.4 GHz WiFi 4 802.11b/g/n, Bluetooth 4.2 LE, 3D antenna Expansion – 14x GPIO broken out to standard pitch headers Debugging / Programming – USB + serial/UART for programming Misc – Power (red) & charge (orange) LED’s, APA102 RGB LED Power Supply 5V via micro USB port 700 …

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Aconno Bluetooth Beacons Come with Various Sensors, Nordic Semi nRF52 BLE SoC

Aconno Bluetooth Beacons

We first covered products from Aconno is 2017 with their Bluetooth LE development board powered by the company’s ACN52832 BLE module based on Nordic Semi nRF52832 ARM Cortex-M4 multi-procotol wireless SoC. Since then they’ve launched several small Bluetooth beacon modules based on ACN52832, and the company has what they call a presale promotion until May 21st, but it looks really like a group buying event for their existing BLE modules where the price goes down as more people purchase modules. Six Bluetooth modules are offered: acnSENSA multisensor Bluetooth tag with temperature, light, humidity, barometer, accelerometer, magnetometer, gyroscope acnBEACON programmable Bluetooth tag acnACT BLE beacon with button and RGD LED, magnetometer, phototransistor acnNFC programmable Bluetooth tag with NFC tag emulator acnRANGE distance measuring beacon with time-of-flight sensor acnFIND Bluetooth smart tag with LED, sound and accelerometer All modules come with a replaceable CR2450 battery, and IP65 enclosure. Pricing currently ranges from 15.96 Euros (Net) to 29.40 Euros (Net), but price may …

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Seeed Studio W600 Certified WiFi Module to Support Arduino, Micropython

W600 Certified WiFi Module

Last year, Seeed Studio introduced Air602 WiFi module, a competitor to ESP8266 based on Winner Micro W600 Arm Cortex-M3 microcontroller and selling for $1.90. The module was clearly optimized for cost and size since it offered only a few I/Os, and there was absolutely no mention about FCC or CE certifications. The company has now launched another W600 module, slightly larger to expose more I/Os, and pre-certified to comply with FCC and CE requirements. W600 certified WiFi module is offered standalone, or fitted to “Grove – W600” module for easy connection to Arduino boards. W600 Module Specifications: WiSoC – Winner Micro W600 Arm Cortex-M3 microcontroller with 1MB Flash, RF Transceiver, CMOS PA, BaseBand WiFi Connectivity – 802.11 b/g/n up to 150 Mbps Frequency – 2.4~2.4835 GHz Features – Wi-Fi WMM, WMM-PS, WPA/WPA2, WPS Protocols – TCP, UDP, ICMP, DHCP, DNS, HTTP Access Point and Station modes PCB antenna Expansion – 25x castellated holes with 2x UART, 2x SPI, up to …

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Eclipse IoT Survey Report Reveals Arm & Linux Dominate, Security Concerns

Constrained devices Arm IoT

The Eclipse IoT Working Group has just released a report asking the global IoT developer community to share their perceptions, requirements, and priorities. And with over 1,700 individuals taking the survey between February and March 2019, the key findings are interesting: IoT drives real-world, commercial outcomes today. 65% of respondents are currently working on IoT projects professionally or will be in the next 18 months. IoT developers mostly use C, C++, Java, JavaScript, and Python AWS, Azure, and GCP are the leading IoT cloud platforms Top three industry focus areas remain the same as last year: IoT Platforms, Home Automation, and Industrial Automation / IIoT. MQTT remains the dominant IoT communication protocol leveraged by developers The Eclipse Desktop IDE is the leading IDE for building IoT applications The last point may be slightly biased because the survey was done by the Eclipse IoT Working Group, so most respondents were already familiar with the Eclipse IDE. Security concerns dropped slightly compared …

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