199 Euros “Energy Harvesting Solution To Go” Kit with Energy Micro Cortex M3 Starter Kit

If you’re interesting in battery less ultra low power applications, Energy Micro, Linear Technology and Würth Elektronik have announced an energy harvesting development platform early last month. The “Energy Harvesting Solution To Go” Kit is composed of an Energy Micro Giant Gecko (Cortex M3) Starter Kit and an energy harvesting board that is capable of getting enough solar, thermal, piezoelectric or electromagnetic energy to power the MCU board. The power connector shown above connects directly to the Giant Gecko Starter Kit board to provide power. Although there are 4 energy harvesters on the board, only one power source can be selected at a time via jumpers. Several power sources can be selected by using diodes. The board The energy harvesting board offers two integrated energy sources: A solar cell (32mm x 50mm) A thermo-generator (40mm x 40mm). And 2 other external energy sources can be added to the board via connectors. Würth Elektronik provides a user’s manual,  schematics  (PDF) and …

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WM8850-MID Tablet Firmware Files and Root Instructions

I’ve bought a noname tablet described as W8850-MID in the Android Settings that did not come rooted, and after several attempts trying to find how to root the tablet I had more or less given up, as tools such as UnlockRoot or OneClickRoot did not work with the device. After not using my tablet for 2 months, I started it again, but it just showed the Android animation forever, and failed to boot to the home screen. So I had to do something and finally managed to find firmware files for the device and root it. I’ll explain the whole process I went through in this post, but basically all you have to know is that if you have the same WM8850-MID tablet as I have (WM8850_MID7_PuZhi_W01_8223), it is fully compatible with Eken W70 and you can just install the latest W70 firmware (v1.10) from Eken support site that comes already rooted or use a tool called RootBurner (if you …

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OLPC XO-4 Touch Laptop Powered by Marvell ARMADA PXA2128

Last year, OLPC (One Laptop Per Child) announced their first laptop powered by ARM, with OLPC X-1.75 powered by Marvell ARMADA 610 single core processor (And sold over 100,000 since Q1 2012). The 2 new models – OLPC XO-4 and OLPC XO-4 Touch – will be upgraded to ARMADA PXA2128 triple core processor (2 ARMv7 Core + 1 Hybrid LPM (Low Power Mode) ARMv7 core), which the OLPC XO-4 Touch offering multitouch support. OLPC XO-4 laptop will look exactly like the OLPC 1.75 laptop pictured below. OLPC XO-4 will have the following specifications: SoC – Marvell PXA2128 (ARMv7 compatible) @ 1 GHz with Vivante GC2000 GPU System memory – 1GB or 2GB DDR3 RAM (Depending on configuration) Mass storage: 4 GB or 8GB NAND flash (eMMC) Internal microSD card slot for repair/replacement Externally accessible SD card slot; Display – 7.5” dual-mode TFT display with touchscreen (2 simultaneous touch max) Audio – Internal stereo speakers and amplifier, internal monophonic microphone,  jacks …

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$149 Hardkernel ODroid-X2 Development Board with Exynos 4412 @ 1.7 GHz and 2 GB RAM

You’ve probably heard about the ODROID-X development board announced in July by Hardkernel. They now have an updated version called ODroid-X2 with Samsung Exynos 4412 clocked at 1.7 GHz (vs 1.4 GHz) and 2 GB RAM (vs 1 GB RAM for the first version). They also boosted the Mali 400 clock speed from 400 MHz to 533 MHz. Apart from being a good mobile development platform, the 2 GB RAM could make the board a pretty good native ARM build machine under Ubuntu, as I’ve read 1 GB RAM is not always enough at link stage (e.g. for Debian packages, sorry I can’t find the link), unless you use swap which tremendously slows things down. The rest of the board seems identical and it just looks the same as the first version. Charbax shot a video of Hardkernel ODroid-X2 development board at ARM Techcon 2012: ODroid-X2 will cost $149 (ODroid-X costs $129) and be available at the end of November. …

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TI and AllGo Embedded Launch E-Tab Tablet Reference Design Powered by TI AM3354 Processor

Texas Instruments and Allgo Embedded jointly announced the availability of E-Tab, a tablet reference design based on Cortex A8 Sitara AM3354 processor that targets the healthcare, logistics, retail and education markets as well as hotels and restaurants. Here are the tablet reference designs specifications: Processor –  TI’s AM3354 ARM Cortex-A8 microprocessor (up to 1 GHz) Operating System – Android ICS 4.0 System Memory – 512 MB DDR3 RAM Storage – 512 MB Nand Flash and 4GB Micro SD card Display –  7″ WVGA TFT LCD with 5-Touch Capacitive Touch panel Audio –  Stereo Headphone, Internal MIC and Internal Mono Speaker Connectivity: WiFi 802.11 b/g/n + BT 2.1 Module Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR Ethernet 10/100Mbps (Optional) Camera – Internal USB Camera Module (Optional) USB Interfaces – USB High Speed Host Port and USB OTG (ADB and Debug purpose) Key/Button – Single Button for Back and Home screen, Reset Switch and Power On/Off Button Battery – Li-Ion 3.7V Nom, 3300mAH with protection …

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Crowdfunding Initiative to Open AMLogic AML8726-M3 STB Source Code

J1nx (Peter Steenbergen) has spend a lot of time together with XBMC developers to try to bring XBMC (Linux) to ARM based set-top boxes, and initially AllWinner A10 processor seemed like a good candidate, unfortunately due to the lack of proper video engine libraries for Linux, progress on this SoC has been extremely slow. Then when Pivos and XBMC announced Pivos Xios DS set-top box based on AMLogic aml8726-M(1) would support XBMC natively, and the kernel and bootlooader (u-boot) source code was made available both on Pivos github account and AMLogic open source website, AML8726 series of processors appeared to be an ideal solution for this purpose. Instead of AML8726-M (aka AML8726-M1) which is limited to 512 MB, it was decided instead to use a faster processor AML8726-M3 that supports 1 GB RAM. The STB of choice is based on “MBX – f16ref” which should be some kind of development board. You would think that since a lot of source …

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ARM Unveils its First 64-bit Cores: ARM Cortex A53 (LITTLE) and Cortex A57 (big)

ARM Techcon 2012 started yesterday with a major announcement, as ARM unveiled the ARM Cortex A50 series, the first 64-bit ARM Core based on ARMv8 architecture. The company announced 2 cores that can be used independently or in combination to take advantage of big.LITTLE processing: Cortex-A57 – 64-bit core that offers 3x the performance of 2012 superphone in 32-bit, 5x power-efficiency and is scalable beyond 16 cores. It’s the big core in big.LITTLE. Cortex-A53 – 64-bit core that offers the same performance as Cortex A9 but with 4x power efficiency and 25% the size of today CPUs. It’s the LITTLE core in big.LITTLE. Those cores manufactured using 28nm, 20nm and eventually 14nm process technology will be used in smartphones, tablets. mobile computers and servers (See AMD/ARM announcement). They’ll be software compatible with ARMv7-A processors (Aarch32) which should greatly facilitate the transition and support both 64-bit and 32-bit OS and applications, although obviously 64-bit apps won’t run on 32-bit OS. Engadget …

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Embest SBC8118 Single Board Computer Based on TI AM1808 Processor

Embest recently unveiled the SBC8118 Single Board Computer, an industrial grade SBC powered by Texas Instruments AM1808 ARM9 processor with 128MB Mobile DDR2 RAM and 128MB NAND Flash. The SBC8118 Single Board Computer is aimed at medical, industrial automation, control, communication, and other cost sensitive applications. As you can see from the picture above, it is comprised of a CPU board and an expansion board. Here are the specifications of the CPU board (Mini8118): Processor – 375MHz TI AM1808 ARM926EJ-S Microcontroller (also supports 456MHz operation) Memory – 128 MByte Mobile DDR2 Storage – 128 MByte NAND Flash (on the rear of the board) & 8 Mbit SPI Flash Connectors – Two 2.0mm space 3*27-pin dip connectors and the expansion board: Audio/Video Interfaces: TFT LCD interface (50-pin FPC connector, RGB565) 4 line resistive Touch Screen interface Camera interface (30-pin FPC connector, supports CCD and CMOS cameras) Data Transfer Interfaces: Serial port: 1 x 5 line Debug serial port, RS232 voltage 2 …

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