Shelly Motion sensor to feature Silicon Labs WiFi chip with Bluetooth-like power consumption

[Update: The information from Shelly about a new “Cortana M3” processor is incorrect, we’ve been contacted by Silicon Labs, and there’s no Cortana M3 microcontroller from the company, Shelly is just using one of the company’s Cortex-M3 based WiFi solutions (SoC or module). The article remains unchanged] WiFi is one of the most convenient ways to connect IoT devices as it’s omnipresent, low-cost, and the range is ideal for the typical smart home. That’s all good until you start to power the device with a tiny battery, as WiFi consumes much more power than Zigbee, Z-Wave, or Bluetooth. Over five years ago, Rockchip RKi6000 WiFi SoC promised Bluetooth 4.0 LE power consumption numbers allowing coin-cell powered WiFi devices, and there were some demos the following year, but I’ve yet to see a consumer device based on the solution. This brings me to the main topic of this post: Shelly Motion, a soon-to-be-launched smart motion sensor said to be powered by […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

ESP32-S2 board targets battery-powered applications with 30uA deep sleep power consumption

A few months ago, Olimex unveiled renders of ESP32-S2-Devkit-LiPo WiFi board that was supposed to consume as little as 2uA in sleep mode, follows ESP32-S2-Saola-1 board form factor and pinout, and adds an ultra-efficient circuitry to support LiPo batteries. The good news is that Olimex has now launched two versions of their ESP32-S2 board optimized for battery-powered applications with ESP32-S2-DevKit-Lipo and ESP32-S2-WROVER-DevKit-Lipo (with 2MB PSRAM) going for 5.56 Euros and 6.36 Euros respectively. ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo specifications: Wireless module: ESP32-S2-DevKit-LiPo – ESP32-S2-WROOM with Espressif ESP32-S2 single-core 32-bit LX7 microprocessor up to 240 MHz with  128 KB ROM, 320 KB SRAM, 16 KB SRAM in RTC, 4MB SPI flash ESP32-S2-WROVER-Devkit-LiPo – ESP32-S2-WROVER – same as above plus 2MB PSRAM Wireless connectivity – 2.4 GHz 802.11 b/g/n WiFI 4 up to 150 Mbps Expansion – 2x 20-pin I/O headers with SPI, I2S, UART, I2C, touch sensors, PWM, etc… (pin-to-pin compatible with ESP32-S2-SAOLA-1) Debugging – Micro USB port via CH340T USB to serial chip Misc […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

Arm Ethos-U65 microNPU enables low-power AI inference on Cortex-A & Neoverse SoC’s

Arm introduced their very first microNPU (Micro Neural Processing Unit) for microcontrollers at the beginning of the year with Arm Ethos-U55 designed for Cortex-M microcontrollers such as Cortex-M55, and delivering 64 to 512 GOPS of AI inference performance or up to a 480x increase in ML performance over Cortex-M CPU inference. The company has now unveiled an update with Arm Ethos-U65 microNPU that maintains the efficiency of Ethos-U55 but enables neural network acceleration in higher performance embedded devices powered by Arm Cortex-A and Arm Neoverse SoCs. Arm Ethos-U65 delivers up to 1 TOPS, and as seen in the diagram enables features that can not be done with Ethos-U55 including object classification and real-time classification. Compared to Ethos-N78 NPU, the new microNPU offers less AI performance, but a significantly higher efficiency although AFAIK no quantified by Arm. The company says the development workflow remains the same with the use of the TensorFlow Lite Micro (TFLmicro) runtime that runs on a Cortex-M […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

Learn more about Hailo-8 AI accelerator and understanding AI benchmarks

Last week we wrote about Hailo-8 M.2 card delivering up to 26 TOPS of AI performance, and comparing well against Google Edge TPU and Intel Movidius Myriad X  both in terms of footprint, performance, and efficiency. I’ve since then had a conference call with Liran Bar, VP of Business Development for Hailo, where we had time to discuss more about Hailo’s AI solutions, and how to interpret & understand AI benchmarks that may be misleading in many instances. Hailo-8 Architecture In the first post, we noted the chip managed to get the extra performance and efficiency thanks to a “proprietary novel structure-driven Data Flow architecture instead of the usual Von Neumann architecture”. But that’s a bit abstract, so Liran told me one of the key reasons for the performance improvement is that RAM is self-contained without the need for external DRAM like other solutions. This decreases latency a lot and reduces power consumption. Internally, the Hailo-8 chip is comprised of […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

3µA/MHz Ambiq Apollo 4 MCU Targets Battery-powered IoT Devices with Voice Processing

Ambiq Micro is using sub-threshold voltages under 0.5V to offer ultra-low-power Arm microcontrollers. In 2015, the company launch the Apollo Cortex-M4F MCU with 30µA/MHz power consumption in active mode, which was followed in 2016 by Apollo 2 in consuming just 10µA/MHz, and Apollo 3 (Blue)  dropped power consumption to as low as 6µA/MHz against using a Cortex-M4F @ 48 MHz in active mode. The fourth generation of ultra-low-power Apollo microcontroller has now been announced with Apollo 4 and Apollo 4 Blue microcontrollers – the latter adding Bluetooth – halving the power consumption of Apollo 3 at just 3µA/MHz, or ten times less than the original ultra-low-power MCU from the company. Apollo 4 (Blue) specifications and key features: MCU Core – Arm Cortex-M4F core up to 192 MHz (TurboSPOT) with FPU, Memory Protection Unit (MPU), and Secure Boot GPU – 2D/2.5D graphics accelerator with full alpha blending, texture and frame buffer compression Ultra-Low Power Memory Up to 2MB of non-volatile MRAM […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

Z-Wave Long Range (LR) Promises Up to 4 Times the Range, 10-year Battery Life

The new Z-Wave Alliance Technical and Certifications workgroup, part of the Z-Wave Alliance, has announced the new Z-Wave Long Range (Z-Wave LR) specifications offering up to four times the range, support for ten times larger network, and 10-year coin cell battery life while keeping backward compatibility and interoperability Z-Wave LR will support up to 2000 nodes on a single smart home network making it suitable for indoor and outdoor smart home applications in multi-dwelling units, hotels, and hospitals, and removing the need for repeaters. The Z-Wave LR specification will be managed and certified under the Z-Wave Plus V2 certification program that currently mandates the inclusion of the enhanced S2 security framework as well as SmartStart plug-and-play setup feature for the consumer smart home. More details may be found on the press release and some of the sessions that were presented at Works With by Silicon Labs Virtual Conference on September 9-10, 2020. Via EE News Jean-Luc Aufranc (CNXSoft)Jean-Luc started CNX […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

Intel Jasper Lake Celeron & Pentium Processors Lineup Leaked

Intel Tremont

Intel has already announced Intel Tiger Lake processors designed for long battery-life, ultra-thin laptops, but which will also be found in industrial applications. I was also told Intel Elkhart Lake processors would be announced on September 24th. Elkhart Lake processors are based on the new Atom Tremont architecture, and so far, I thought they would be the successors to the affordable Gemini Lake processors. But FanlessTech just leaked the Jasper Lake lineup, also based on Tremont and whose SKUs closely match what we would expect from Gemini Lake successors. At this point, there are three desktop SKUs with 10W TDP, and three mobile SKUs with 6W TDP. All processors come with 4MB L2 cache and unspecified Intel UHD graphics. They’ll be manufactured with Intel 10nm process. What’s a bit unusual in the table above is that Intel normally uses “J” letter for 10W desktop processors, and “N” for mobile processors, but all six SKUs above start with “N”. The new […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G Compute Platform Offers 50% Greater Performance, Longer Battery Life

Qualcomm Snapdragon 8cx 5G processor was launched last year for always-on always-connected PC and delivers a similar performance of 15W Intel Comet Lake processors with much lower power consumption enabling 20+ hours battery life. The company has now an update with Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G Compute Platform with 50% greater system-wide performance and battery life versus “competing solutions”. More on that later. Snapdragon 8cx Gen 2 5G specifications with the differences against the first generation in bold or stricken-through: CPU – 8x Qualcomm Kryo 495 64-bit cores 7nm Process Technology Visual Subsystem – Qualcomm Adreno GPU with DX12 support Memory – LPDDR4x, 8 Channels up to 2133 MHz Storage – NVMe SSD, UFS3.0 Qualcomm Artificial Intelligence Engine Qualcomm Hexagon 690 DSP (was 685) Qualcomm Sensing Hub technology Qualcomm All-Ways Aware technology Display Maximum On-Device Display Support: 4K Ultra HD Dual 4K external displays support over DP-MST Audio Qualcomm Aqstic audio technology Qualcomm TrueWireless technology Qualcomm Broadcast Audio technology Qualcomm […]

Support CNX Software – Donate via PayPal or cryptocurrencies, become a Patron on Patreon, or buy review samples