Particle Unveils Three nRF52840 Bluetooth 5 Boards: Argon (WiFi), Boron (LTE), and Xenon, as well as Particle Mesh Technology

In the last year or so, Bluetooth has gotten an upgrade with the release of Bluetooth 5. The new protocol works on several existing platforms, but if you want support for the full set of Bluetooth 5 features such as longer range and higher bandwidth, we’ve seen you need a recent chip such as Nordic Semi nRF52840. However so far, AFAIK you had to buy Nordic Semi own development kit for play with nRF52840, and now Particle has announced not one, but three low cost development boards powered by nRF52840 chip starting at just $9, and supporting their newly announced Particle Mesh technology. So for some reasons, it appears they did not go with Bluetooth Mesh. Particle Xenon – Bluetooth 5 + Mesh Xenon is the cheapest model with the following specifications: SoC – Nordic Semiconductor nRF52840 Arm Cortex-M4F 32-bit processor @ 64MHz with 1MB flash, 256KB RAM Storage –  […]

Sixfab Launches Arduino and Raspberry Pi NB-IoT Shields with Four Sensors

SixFab previously introduced a 3G/4G base shield for the Raspberry Pi boards that would take Quectel based mini PCIe card in order to add cellular connectivity to the popular development boards. The company is now back with NB-IoT shields that should better suited to IoT projects with lower hardware and data costs, and support either 40-pin Raspberry Pi boards or Arduino. SixFab Raspberry Pi NB-IoT Shield Specifications & features: Module – Quectel BC95-B20 NB-IoT Module supporting 800MHz frequency (suitable for the European market) Micro SIM card socket, PCB Antenna and u.FL socket for external antenna I/O expansions 4x Channel 12-bit ADC via ADS1015 Relay with optocoupler protection (24V DC, 120-220V AC Switching) 3-pin 1-Wire interface for DS18B20, DHT21, etc… 4-pin I2C interface 3.3V reference voltage Sensors MMA8452Q 3-axis accelerometer HDC1080 temperature sensor (-40 to +125 °C) HDC1080 humidity sensor (0 to 100%) ALS-PT19 ambient light sensor Misc – User button […]

Digi Introduces XBeeX3 IoT Modules with New Micro Form Factor, RF and Cellular IoT Connectivity

Digi International has just announced the Digi XBee3 series of RF modules and cellular IoT modules. The modules will be available in the existing Digi XBee SMT amd through-hole form factor, as well as a new micro form factor (19×13 mm) that’s about a third of the size of the original XBee RF module. The RF modules will first come with ZigBee 3.0 and IEEE 802.15 support, but Bluetooth LE will be available through a firmware update later on, and WiFi and DigiMesh version will be brought to markets too. The first cellular module supports LTE Cat.1, but the company will eventually launch NB-IoT and eMTC (LTE Cat M) versions for Europe and the US respectively. Some of the shared key capabilities listed by the company: Over-the-air (OTA) changes to devices in the field for bug fixes and new features Dynamically reconfigurable, based upon situation Establish business rules to aggregate, store, […]

Nordic nRF91 Multimode LTE-M / NB-IoT SiP Embeds Arm Cortex-M33, Arm TrustZone, and Assisted GPS

Nordic Semi will soon launch nRF91 series low power cellular IoT solution, that consists of a system-in-package (SiP) combining a global multimode LTE-M / NB-IoT modem, an Arm Cortex-M33 core, Arm TrustZone security solution, assisted GPS, and flash memory into a 16x10x1.2 mm package. Nordic Semi nRF91 specifications known to far: CPU – Arm Cortex-M33 ARMv8-M host processor Memory / Storage – Built-in RAM and flash Memory Connectivity Multimode LTE-M (eMTC) and NB-IoT modem by Nordic SAW-less transceiver Custom RF front-end solution from Qorvo. Location – Optional assisted GPS combining cellular and GPS technology for fast and accurate positioning Security – Arm TrustZone security via Arm CryptoCell-310 security IP Power Management Package – 16 x 10 x 1.2 mm Nordic Semiconductor nRF91 Series is said to include a complete suite of software and development tools for product development, but no details were provided at this stage. The solution has already […]

Year 2017 in Review, Top 10 Posts, and Some Fun Stats

2017 is coming to an end, and as I do every year, I’ll take a look back at the year that was on CNX Software. The pace of development boards launches has not slowed down this year, and we get an even wider range from the low-end with Orange Pi or NanoPi boards, to much more powerful ARM boards, and some new entrants like Libre Computer. The same is true for TV boxes, most of which now support 4K HDR, ranging from ultra cheap models selling for less than $20 to higher end Android TV boxes, while mini PCs were dominated by Intel Apollo Lake models, although some Cherry Trail products were also launched. Processor-wise, Amlogic launched more Amlogic S905X derivatives with S905W/S905D/S905Z, which are popular in the TV box market. Rockchip’s most interesting processor this year was RK3328 quad core Cortex A53 processor designed for 4K HDR Android TV […]

LoRaWAN Currently Leads LPWAN IoT Gateway Deployments Says VDC Research

LoRaWAN, Sigfox, Weightless, RPMA, NB-IoT, etc… There are many LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Networks) solutions, but it’s unclear whether most/all will survive and coexist, or there will eventually be a couple of winners used by everyone. VDC Research is claiming that so far, LoRaWan assumes LPWAN leadership for IoT gateways, explaining that “LoRaWAN (LoRa) has generated considerable traction with new product launches from a number of gateway suppliers through the past 18 months”, but points to mounting competition from 3GPP standards such as NB-IoT and LTE Cat M1. Sadly, the company did not provides number in their public announcement, and those are only available in the paid report. VDC Research still released a public executive brief (free registration required), with some of the highlights including: The global market for IoT gateway hardware is forecasted to grow to more than $2.5B in 2021. While intelligent gateways generated more market revenue […]

RAK Wireless Introduces LoRa + BLE Module, LoRa GPS Tracker, and NB-IoT/eMTC Arduino Shield

We’ve previously covered several products from RAK Wireless, including RAK WisCam Arduino compatible Linux camera, RAK CREATOR Pro Ameba RTL8711AM WiFi IoT board, and WisCore modular development kit for application leveraging voice assistants such as Amazon Alexa. AFAIK, the company had not released any new products since their RAK831 LoRa gateway module launched last summer, but they just contact me with the release of three new wireless products, namely RAK813 BLE + LoRa module, RAK811 LoRa tracker board, and WisLTE NB-IoT/eMTC/eGPRS Arduino shield. RAK813 BLE + LoRa module & Development Board Main features and specifications: Connectivity LoraWAN via Semtech SX127x (LoRa) chipset Frequency Ranges 433MHz, 470MHz FCC Frequency range 902~928MHz CE Frequency range 863~870MHz MIC Frequency range 920~928MHz KCC Frequency range 920~923MHz Receiver Sensitivity: LoRa down to -146 dBm TX Power – adjustable up to +14 dBm, max PA boost up to 20dbm Range – Up to 15 km in rural […]

NB-IoT Overview, Technical Presentation, and Getting Started (in Thailand)

As I mentioned in my post yesterday I attended a talk about NB-IoT at Chiang Mai Maker Party 4.0 (2017). It was presented by representatives from AIS, a large telco company in Thailand, and I’ll give a summary of what I learned beside that Xiaomi Mi A1 camera is not that good after all, and I should have taken my DSLR camera with me instead. So apologies for the poor quality of some of the photos… The talk started from a higher level, including marketing / business propositions, and has time passed it become more and more technical. The first part of talk was presented by Phuchong Charoensuk, IoT marketing specialist at AIS, and he provided some more details about the company, and their current B2B IoT/M2M market (400,000 subscribers), before providing an overview of IoT, and how NB-IoT will bring in not only larger businesses but also startups and […]