As quickly as the IoT landscape has expanded over the last several years, we’re just around the corner from another massive sea change in connectivity. Smartphones are ubiquitous, and smart TVs, wearables and connected speakers are becoming more prolific. But this is just the beginning of what’s estimated to span over 1 billion IoT devices in the near future, spanning new applications like connected appliances that can be set up and operated through smartphone apps rather than complicated user manuals. A smart coffee maker, for instance, can serve up your favorite brew based on either pre-programmed settings or directions sent from your phone – all while streamlining the maintenance procedures and providing diagnostics feedback.
Or consider the connected medical space, where connectivity is being added to a wide range of medical and pharmaceutical applications. These include blood pressure monitors, inhalers, glucose meters, injectors and many more disposable applications. And as connected devices continue to explode in variety and volume, the costs for enabling these IoT systems are also going up.
SmartBond TINY addresses the root of this issue. As a Bluetooth LE SoC that balances a small chip size and power footprint, and boasts performance levels unmatched by anything else on the market, SmartBond TINY is perfectly suited to fueling new IoT applications for connected appliances, medical devices and much more. This creates a reduced system cost where the price point of adding Bluetooth LE functionality to an SoC has broken through the $1 barrier, hitting as low as just 50 cents in high volumes.
The new DA14531 will also open up markets that were previously prohibitive for Bluetooth LE or any wireless technology at all because of power, size, battery type or system cost. These markets are into disposable applications like (cold food chain) asset tracking, beacons and smart labels. Low-cost remote controls replacing IR with Bluetooth LE is another example to consider.
How SmartBond TINY Stacks Up
With this newest addition to our lineup of Bluetooth LE solutions, it’s worth asking: How does this newest chip compare to what came before? And not just compared to others on the market, but Dialog’s previous solutions.
- SmartBond TINY comes in at 2.0x1.7 mm, half the size of its predecessors.
- SmartBond TINY requires just six external passives, one clock source and a single power supply to create a complete Bluetooth LE system.
- The chip is powered by an integrated DC-DC converter that boasts a wide operating voltage of 1.1 to 3.3V, and environmentally-friendly, disposable silver oxide, zinc air or printable batteries – a critical design feature for powering high-volume applications.
- The chip also features a 32-bit arm Cortex M0+, complete with integrated memories and both analog and digital peripherals.
- It boasts the lowest power consumption on the market, with a system power consumption of 2.2mA in Rx and 3.5mA in Tx mode.
All of this adds up to the DA14531 notching a record-high score of 18300 on IoTMark™- BLE, the industry gold standard for IoT connectivity, beating out not only other rival solutions on the market but Dialog’s own previous offerings as well.
The DA14531 Module
In addition to the main SmartBond TINY chip, we’re also announcing its accompanying module, slated to go into mass production in Q2 2020. The DA14531 module makes it even easier for Dialog customers to incorporate the SmartBond TINY into their product development pipelines and significant time and cost savings in the process. With its capability for balancing a high volume of applications with low system costs, and its sub-$1 price point, the DA14531 module lowers the barrier of entry for IoT manufacturers and engineers adding SmartBond TINY to their systems.
What It Looks Like in Action
The DA14531 supports a wide range of connected health and customer applications, including but not limited to:
- Connected health: Connected injectors, medicine dispensers, inhalers, glucose monitors, smart patches, blood pressure meters, thermometers, weight scales
- Connected consumer: Beacons, smart labels, remote controls, RFID tags, smart watches, stylus pens, mice, toys, low-power sensors, smart credit and banking cards, BLE add-ons to existing applications
All controllable and easily provisioned via BLE with a simple app.
Compliant with Bluetooth 5.1 and future-proofed for the next wave of the IoT, the DA14531 SmartBond TINY and DA14531 module mark the next step forward in SoC engineering: striking the balance between a smaller-than-ever form factor and footprint with a market-leading performance that’s ready to connect the next billion IoT devices to come.
This blog just scratches the surface of what’s inside the DA14531 and what it can do. Check out the full range of specs, features and applications for the SmartBond TINY and module here.