Nordic Semiconductor And Japanese Partners Demonstrate Application Development-Ready Bluetooth Low Energy Modules At MWC 2013
Nordic Semiconductor joins with leading Japanese ODMs to unveil tested and qualified blank nRF51822-based modules that allow engineers to focus on developing the application code for winning Bluetooth Smart appcessories
Ultra low power (ULP) RF specialist Nordic Semiconductor ASA recently announces demonstrations of 'blank' Bluetooth low energy modules from Japanese suppliers on the company's booth (Hall 6, stand 6C70, the Norwegian Pavilion) at Mobile World Congress 2013. The modules, based on Nordic's award-winning* nRF51822 multiprotocol System-on-Chip (SoC),boast fully-compliant Bluetooth low energy protocol software cleanly separated from a blank application stack area ready for rapid development of the customer's own code.
The modules being demonstrated come from leading Japanese ODMs Braveridge Co. Ltd, Fujitsu Component Limited, and Hosiden Corporation. Braveridge is exhibiting the "BVMCN5101_BK", Fujitsu Component the "MBH7BLZ02-100057", and Hosiden the "HRM1017". Other manufacturers are expected to release similar modules during 2013.
These vendors selected the nRF51822 SoC for the modules because of its ultra low power consumption and RF performance, but also because, uniquely, the RF protocol software is separated from the developer's own application code. (See "About nRF51822" below.)
This separation brings three advantages: first the modules are supplied complete with Nordic's verified and qualified Bluetooth low energy stack; second, the clean boundary between application and protocol stack simplifies development, and third, the application code can be developed on the nRF51822 chip's integrated 32-bit ARM Cortex-M0 based processor.
Because the modules from each supplier will be shipped as Bluetooth v4.0- and RF-approved, development project timescales are shortened and costs reduced. Code development is accelerated by removing the need to struggle with integration of application code as part of a vendor-imposed application development framework.
In addition, the nRF51822-based modules' processors allow for flexible application customization using the highly popular and familiar ARM Cortex programming environment without recourse to an external processor and associated development kit.
"The Bluetooth low energy protocol stack in the nRF51822-based modules from our Japanese partners will be shipped as tested and qualified so the developer can focus solely on the application code," explains Mitsuo Yamazaki, Nordic's Regional Sales Manager for Japan. "This is impossible with competing devices and makes it much easier for designers to develop Bluetooth Smart-powered applications for the lucrative market for 'appcessories' - an accessory wirelessly paired with an 'app' on a smartphone or tablet computer. This market is in its infancy, but is forecast to become huge."
Bluetooth low energy is a hallmark element of the latest release of Bluetooth wireless technology and is a pre-requisite for Bluetooth Smart products. Such products are able to wirelessly interoperate with the latest generation of Bluetooth Smart Ready handsets and tablet computers now being offered by major consumer electronics companies. (See "About Bluetooth low energy, Bluetooth Smart, and Bluetooth Smart Ready" below.)
* "Spirit of Wireless 2013", Best Application, Incisor.TV.
"Golden Mousetrap Awards 2013", Electronics & Test: Wireless Components, Design News.
SOURCE: Nordic Semiconductor