PineTime is a $25 Smartwatch / Companion for PinePhone Linux Phone

PineTime

We’ve recently seen Linux smartphones are coming in a few weeks or months, but the $150 PinePhone may not come alone, and soon be joined by a $25 companion, namely PineTime smartwatch. That’s what we learned through a tweet by Pine64 explaining the PineTime is a Linux smartphone companion that can run FreeRTOS or Arm Mbed operating systems.  It will be a side-project however, and the focus is still on PinePhone and Pinebook Pro, meaning it will take a while depending on the level of community engagement. Available information is limited to the discussion in the tweet at this stage, but we do know the watch will be made of zinc alloy &  plastic, come with a charging dock, a 20 mm wristband, an heart-rate monitor and last several days on a charge. We’ve also seen people interested in porting ZephyrOS to the watch, and others would like to make it work with Android and/or iOS smartphones. Development kits should …

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AndesCore N22 RISC-V Core Supports RV32IMAC or RV32EMAC Instruction Sets

Andes N22 RISC-V vs Arm Cortex M3 / M0+

We covered Gigadevice GD32V general-purpose microcontroller with a RISC-V “Bumblebee” core last week, and I was informed that Andes Technology had recently introduced AndesCore N22 RISC-V “Bumblebee” IP core capable of supporting either RV32IMAC or RV32EMAC instruction sets. A web search did not reveal any specific information about what “Bumblebee” RISC-V cores are exactly, or maybe it’s in reference that many can be coupled in parallel. But that’s just a small detail, let’s check out in some details what AndesCore N22 core has to offer. The RISC-V core is designed for entry-level MCUs found in IoT devices and wearables, and is capable of deeply embedded protocol processing for I/O control, storage, networking, AI and AR/VR. Highlights of AndesCore N22: AndeStar V5 (RV32IMAC) / V5e (RV32EMAC) Instruction Set Architecture (ISA), compliant to RISC-V technology plus Andes extensions architectured for performance and functionality enhancements 32-bit, 2-stage pipeline CPU architecture 16/32-bit mixable instruction format for compacting code density Branch prediction to speed up …

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Google Glass Enterprise Edition v2 Features Snapdragon XR1 Processor

Google Glass Enterprise Edition v2

To be honest, I was pretty happy when it was clear that smart glasses for the consumer market would not take off, and I would be living in a better, smart glasses-free, world. But I also reckoned that those could have use in professional settings, and Google Glass Enterprise edition was first spotted in 2015 with an Atom processor. The company has now launched an upgraded model with Google Glass Enterprise Edition v2 powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon XR1 eXtended reality (XR) platform. Google Glass Enterprise Edition v2 specifications: SoC – Qualcomm Snapdragon XR1 quad-core Kryo processor @ 1.7GHz with Adreno GPU, Qualcomm AI Engine for on-device processing; 10nm manufacturing process System Memory – 3GB LPDDR4 Storage – 32GB eMMC flash storage Display – 640×360 Optical Display Module Audio out – Mono Speaker, USB audio, BT audio Microphones – 3 beam-forming microphones Camera – 8MP, 80 DFOV Connectivity – Wi-Fi 5 802.11ac, dual-band, single antenna and Bluetooth 5.x AoA (Angle of …

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Omron HeartGuide Wearable Blood Pressure Monitor is Finally Available

Omron HeartGuide Wearable Blood Pressure Monitor

Way back at CES 2016, Omron showcased Project Zero BP6000 wearable blood pressure monitor that was meant to be an FDA approved blood pressure monitor fitting into a watch form factor and starting to sell for $200 at the end of 2016. But the device was not particularly eye-pleasing and FDA approval is really hard, so they unveiled the thinner and prettier Project Zero 2.0 model the next year at CES 2017 with the goal of releasing the device sometimes in 2018 for $300. The good is that the product – now called HeartGuide – will up for pre-order, and slated to ship in January 2019. Sadly, the cost has gone way up since it now sells for $499, and will only ship to a US address. HeartGuide (BP8000-M) wearable blood pressure monitor technical specifications: Display –  Transflective memory-in-pixel LCD Memory – Blood pressure measurement up to 100 times, activity measurement up to 7 days, sleep measurement up to 7 …

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Ambiq Apollo2 Blue Ultra Low Power MCU adds Bluetooth Connectivity

Ambiq Apollo2 Blue

Ambiq Micro unveiled their ultra-low power Apollo MCU back in 2015 with claims of Cortex-M4 performance at Cortex-M0+ energy efficiency by leveraging SPOT (Subthreshold Power Optimized Technology) technology that allows operating the microcontroller at very low voltages (less than 0.5V). Since then the company introduced Apollo2 MCU with 10 μA/MHz power consumption, but still a generic purpose microcontroller. Earlier this year, the company unveiled a new version of Apollo2 microcontroller adding Bluetooth connectivity, and allowing Bluetooth applications that last years on a charge. Meet Apollo2 Blue. Apollo2 Blue key features and specifications: Arm Cortex-M4 Processor up to 48 MHz with FPU, MMU, wake-up interrupt controller with 32 interrupts Ultra-low power memory Up to 1 MB of flash memory for code/data Up to 256 KB of low leakage RAM for code/data 16kB 1 or 2-way Associative Cache Bluetooth 5 Low Energy RF sensitivity – -95 dBm TX: 5mA @0 dBm; RX: 3.5mA Tx output power: -40 dBm to +5 dBm AES …

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Snapdragon Wear 3100 Smartwatch Platform to Deliver Longer Battery Life

Qualcomm Wear 3100 Block Diagram

Qualcomm introduced Snapdragon Wear 2100 in 2016 for wearables, and the processor ended up in several products such as LG Watch Style / Sport smartwatch. Since then the company released other Wear platform for specific applications such as 4G kid watches with Snapdragon Wear 2500, or wearable IoT applications with Snapdragon Wear 1250 offering NB-IoT and eMTC connectivity. The company has now announced Snapdragon Wear 3100 “smartwatch platform” still based on four Arm Cortex A7 cores, but also including a new ultra-low power co-processor to further extend battery life. Snapdragon Wear 3100 “MSM8909w” or “APQ8009w” specifications: CPU – Quad core Arm Cortex-A7 processor @ up to 1.2 GHz GPU – Qualcomm Adreno 304 GPU Co-processor – QCC1110 Display – Up to 640×480 at 60fps via MIPI and/or SPI interfaces Cellular Qualcomm Snapdragon X5 LTE modem with peak download speed of 1 Gbps, and peak upload speed of 150 Mbps RF – WTR2965 Qualcomm RF front-end solution (RFFE); QPA4630/QSW8573/QET4101 RFFE with GaAs …

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Nubia–α Wearable Smartphone is a Smartwatch with a Long Curved Display

Nubia alpha wearable smartphone

We have smartphones, we have smartwatches. and we have… Nubia-α that is something in between, and which the company (Nubia) promotes as a “wearable smartphone”. The device comes with a long curved display, and you’d wear it around your wrist just like a watch with access to fitness apps, and music, but just like in a phone, you could make phone calls and send SMS thanks to 4G connectivity, as well as taking selfies or making video calls with its built-in camera. We don’t have the specifications yet, but the thing is real as it was showcased at IFA 2018, although for the eyes only, i.e. no hands-on or even touching the Nubia-α. Engadget reported about the device, and while the reporter clearly did not like the largish camera on the side, she seems impressed by the brightness and colors coming out of the Flex OLED display. The watch / phone? can also be used for payment, I suppose via …

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$100 GLIGO E-Ink Smartwatch Promises “2-Year Battery Life” (Crowdfunding)

Wearables are useful little devices, but many of them suffer from short battery life, and in my case at least, I forget to charge mine from time to time. So when I saw GLIGO E-Ink smartwatch promising 2-year battery life on a charge, it caught my eyes. But then looking into the details, it looks like battery life is really 6 months unless you don’t plan on using the display: We adopted an energy-efficient dual-core design:the quartz core has a battery life of up to two years, e-ink screen has a battery life of up to 180 days. Six months is not that bad either, so let’s still have a look. GLIGO E-Ink smartwatch specifications: MCU – Unamed Arm Cortex M3 microcontroller with 128KB memory Display – E-ink segmented display Japanese Watch Movement Connectivity – Bluetooth 4.2 LE Sensors – Green light heart rate sensor (HRM), 3D G-sensor, 3-axis accelerometer Misc – 15,000 rpm vibrator Battery – 100 mAh charged …

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