Altair FourGee LTE Chipsets Promise 10 Years of Connectivity with AA Batteries for IoT Applications

Connectivity achieved with GSM,. 3G or LTE (4G) cellular networks is great for long distances, but usually costs and power consumption are too high for IoT or M2M communications, which explains why there are competing long range low power WAN standards such as Sigfox, LoRA or Weightless. Altair Semiconductor introduced two new LTE SoCs, namely FourGee-1150/6410 and FourGee-1160/6410 a few months ago, supporting respectively LTE Cat-0 and Cat-1 connectivity, and promising up to 10 years of battery life on AA batteries for smart meters, wearables, security alarms, city lightings, etc… Altair FourGee-1150 and FourGee-1160 key features and specifications: Processor – Multiple MIPS M5150 “Warrior” MCU cores LTE Connectivity FourGee-1150 LTE Release 12 Category-0 (1Mbps / 1Mbps), software upgradeable for supporting Release 13 features Integrated VoLTE/IMS/OTA-DM functionality FourGee-1160 LTE Release 11 Category-1 (10Mbps / 5Mbps), software upgradeable for supporting Releases 12 and 13 features Integrated VoLTE/IMS/OTA-DM with HD voice functionality Software […]

RePhone Kit Create is a DIY Phone and Cellular Development Kit (Crowdfunding)

Seeed Studio has design a modular and open source phone it calls RePhone Kit Create. The kit allows you, or/and your kid(s), to assemble their own phone based on building blocks including a 2G or 3G core module, a touchscreen display module, an audio module, and pre-cut, seawable, washable, and easily drawable Kraft paper to make the case. The kit can also be used for IoT applications using cellular and Bluetooth connectivity, and extra Xadow modules GPS, NFC, motion sensors, camera and more.. Two cellular “core” module can be used: RePhone GSM + BLE module with the “world’s smallest System-on-Chip (SOC) for Wearables and Internet Of Things”, GSM, GPRS and Bluetooth 2.1 and 4.0 support. RePhone Core Module 3G with a “powerful microcontroller”,a standard Xadow interface (USB, GPIO, I2C, SPI, UART, EINT), support for speaker, two microphones and a headset, a Nano SIM, and support for HSPA/WCDMA:850/1900 and GPRS/EDGE:850/1900. Voltage: […]

Forlinx Embedded Introduces a Features-packed Freescale i.MX6 Industrial Board

Forlinx Embedded Technology has made several ARM9, ARM11, and Cortex A8 boards in the past, and they’ve now launched their first ARM Cortex-A9 board powered by Freescale i.MX6 Quad processor with 1GB RAM, 8GB eMMC Flash, HDMI, LCD, and LVDS interfaces, mPCIe connector for 3G module, SATA, GPS, CAN bus, RS485 port, and more. The board is composed of a baseboard and a 220-pin CPU module (soldered) with the following combined specifications: SoC – Freescale i.MX6 Quad with 4x ARM Cortex A9 cores @ up to 1.2 GHz and Vivante GC2000 3D GPU System Memory – 1GB DDR3 Storage – 8GB eMMC, SATA connector, and SD card slot up to 32GB Video Output / Display I/F – HDMI  1.4, LCD interface (7″ capacitive touch available), and 2x 8-bit LVDS interface. 4-wire resistive touch. Audio – 1x stereo audio jack, 1x mono microphone jack, 2x speaker headers Camera I/F – 1x […]

Mediatek LinkIt Assist 2502 Open Source Hardware Board Targets Wearables and IoT Applications

After LinkIt ONE, Mediatek Labs has introduced a new IoT development kit based on their Aster M2502 ARM7 processor with LinkIt Assist 2502 comprised of AcSiP MT2502A IoT SiP Core module, a 802.11b/g/n module, a GNSS module, and an exchangeable 240×240 16-bit color capacitive touch LCM Board. The AcSiP module can also be purchased separately, so you could use LinkIt Assist 2502 board for early development, because moving to your custom hardware based on AcSiP MT2502A module. LinkIt Assist 2502A specifications: MCU – AcSiP AI2502S05 module with  MT2502A (Aster) ARM7 EJ-STM processor @ 260MHz, 4MB RAM, 16MB flash Display – 240×240 LCD module; 16-bit color depth; transflective; based on ST7789S driver IC. Connectivity Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n via AcSiP CW01S module based on MT5931 SoC Bluetooth 2.1 SPP and 4.0 GATT dual mode (part of MT2502A) GPS via AcSiP CW03S module based on MT3332 chip supporting GPS, GLONASS, and BeiDou. GSM […]

Spark Electron Cellular Module for M2M Projects Comes with a $3 Monthly Data Plan (Crowdfunding)

Spark IO started with Spark Core, a tiny Wi-Fi module, followed with Spark Photon is a cheaper, faster, and tinier Wi-Fi module, and now the company is launching Spark Electron to bring cellular connectivity to hobbyist projects at an affordable cost and small form factor. Spark Electron specifications: MCU – ST Micro STM32F205 ARM Cortex M3 microcontroller @ 120 MHz with  1MB Flash, 128K RAM Cellular Connectivity – U-Blox SARA U-series (3G) or G-series (2G) modem + NanoSIM card slot + u.FL connector for Antenna Headers – 36 pins with 28 GPIOs (D0-D13, A0-A13), plus TX/RX, 2 GNDs, VIN, VBAT, WKP, 3V3, RST USB – micro USB port for power and programming Misc – Setup and reset buttons, LED Dimensions – 5.08 cm x 2.03 cm x 0.76 cm (1.27 cm including headers) The board can be programmed with Wiring (Arduino’s programming language), C/C++, or ARM assembly. It’s longer than Spark […]

FOSDEM 2015 Schedule – January 31 – February 1 2015

FOSDEM (Free and Open Source Software Developers’ European Meeting) takes place every year during the first week-end of February. This year the developer-oriented event expects to bring over 5000 geeks to share ideas and collaborate on open source projects. Contrary to most other events, it’s free to attend, and you don’t even need to register, just show up. FOSDEM 2015 will take place on January 31- February 1 in Brussels. There will be 551 sessions divided into 5 keynotes, 40 lightning talks, 6 certification exams, and with the bulk being developer rooms and main tracks,  divided into 7 main tracks this year: Languages, Performance, Time, Typesetting, Hardware, Security and Miscellaneous. I’m not going to attend, but it’s still interested to see what will be talked about, and I’ve concocted my own little virtual program out of the main tracks and developers’ rooms. There’s a few minutes overlap between some talks […]

Fernvale Open Source Hardware IoT Board Based on Mediatek MT6260 SoC with GSM Connectivity

Andrew Huang (Bunnie), an hardware engineer, known for hacking the original XBOX, and more recently for Novena open source laptop, has decided it could be interesting to reverse-engineer Mediatek MT6260 processor, as in China, it’s difficult to get documentation, SDK, and tools if you don’t commit to purchase X chips, where X is a rather large number. He and others also checked whether their work could be open sourced legally, and assert their “fair use” rights to reverse-engineer hardware and firmware. And so Fernvale project was born both as a technical challenge and to make a point. MT6260 is a $3 ARM7EJ-S processor clocked at 364 MHz with 8MB built-in RAM, interfaces such as I2C, SPI, PWM, UART, as well as LCD and touchscheen controller, and audio codec, battery charger, USB,  Bluetooth, and GSM support, which make the $6 Atmel MCU used in Arduino board look expensive. The main differences […]

Gemalto Cinterion Concept Board Features 3G Connectivity, Arduino Headers for Secure Java M2M Applications

Gemalto is a digital security company providing software solutions, smart cards, and secure modules, and one the largest manufacturer of SIM cards. The company has launched a developer board earlier this year called Cinterion Concept Board with the company’s Cinterion EHS6 M2M Java embedded machine-to-machine (M2M) 3G module, and Arduino compatible headers. Cinterion Concept Board specifications: 2G/3G M2M Module – Gemalto Cinterion ESH6 with Java ME embedded support Cellular Connectivity GPRS/EDGE Class 12, HSPA, 5 bands 3G, 4 bands 2G. Voice support. On-board antenna (top left side on picture) SIM card holder Expansion Arduino Compatible headers 8 GPIO with level shifters, and corresponding LEDs USB – 1x mini USB port for power, 1x mini USB port for debugging and power Misc – Start on/off, and user buttons, LEDs for serial interface. Power – 5V via either mini USB ports, solder pads for external battery. Dimensions – N/A The board is […]