Pre-approved Bluetooth Low Energy Module Allows Prototypes to be Developed Within Hours While Employing the Class-leading Nordic nRF51822 SoC
Nov 16, 2012
Oslo, Norway 2012/11/15 - Ultra low power (ULP) RF specialist Nordic Semiconductor announced that U.K. ODM, Laird Technologies, has developed a fully-approved programmable Bluetooth® low energy module that enables developers to use BASIC language syntax to create Bluetooth low energy prototypes based on the class-leading Nordic nRF51822 SoC in less than a day.
"Laird Technologies has been developing Bluetooth wireless technology modules for over 10 years, and our first Bluetooth low energy module draws on our vast experience," says Jonathan Kaye, Laird Technologies Embedded Wireless Solutions Product Manager. "The BL600 series module reduces a customer’s development time by an average of six months and eliminates the need to become proficient in Bluetooth low energy wireless technology or obtain the necessary wireless certifications and approvals. Our embedded smartBASIC engine also provides our customers with their own personal Bluetooth low energy 'expert' built into every module."
The BL600 series surface mount module is about the size of an adult thumbnail (19 x 12.5 x 3 mm) and has a cubic volume that is less than that of a regular CR2032 coin cell battery. Requiring 2.1-3.6 volts of power, it is a standalone, hostless, programmable device that attaches to sensors via UART, SPI, I2C, or GPIO, with a small amount of code written in Laird’s event-driven smartBASIC programming language. Data collected from a sensor can be sent to any device that is compatible with the latest Bluetooth v4.0 specification including smartphones, tablet computers, and local area network (LAN) or wide area network (WAN) gateways.
The BL600 series module features an integrated antenna or option for external antenna, and is said to provide a generous 95dB link budget for maximum operating range. The module supports a variety of Bluetooth low energy profiles including Heart Rate, Thermometer, and Proximity profiles, plus custom profiles created using free development tools and Laird's smartBASIC programming language.
Laird's smartBASIC is an object-based language that can cover all Bluetooth low energy functionality for seamless bridging of sensors to Bluetooth low energy characteristic value attributes. After initializing the environment, a typical smartBASIC application waits for events that are serviced by user-written handlers. While the application waits for events, the module is in very low power mode consuming less than 10uA of current from the coin cell battery.
"This series of modules from Laird Technologies means customers don't need to be experts in Bluetooth low energy to start designing Bluetooth low energy products or capabilities," concludes Geir Langeland, Nordic Semiconductor's Director of Sales & Marketing. "And because the BL600 series is based on the Nordic nRF51822 SoC, customer designs will benefit from class-leading levels of RF performance and ultra low power consumption."
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About Nordic Semiconductor
Nordic Semiconductor is a global leader within ultra-low power (watch battery) wireless technology, a field it pioneered. Today the company is also an associate member of the Bluetooth SIG and member of the SIG’s Board of Directors. Nordic contributed decades of core expertise in ultra-low power wireless to the development of Bluetooth low energy wireless technology – the hallmark feature of the latest Bluetooth v4.0 specification.