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Posts tagged ‘Freescale’

Freescale launches gateway platform for the ‘Internet of things’

freescale-treeChip maker Freescale and Oracle are announcing an initiative to create standards for gateways that can deal with a flood of data from devices associated with the “Internet of things.”

The Internet of things refers to the vision of instrumenting everyday devices with sensors and connectivity so that they can send data over the Internet that can be crunched in excruciating detail to gain information about our homes, businesses, or environment. Many chip makers are preparing for the big semiconductor market that will materialize as companies deploy their networks for the Internet of things. Rivals such as Intel, Qualcomm, ARM, and Imagination Technologies are among the companies competing to make chips for the internet of things.

Freescale foresees a flood of data coming from household devices as they collect data and pass it on. Freescale plans to make chips for home gateways that capture that data and pass it on so that it can be used to deliver internet of things services.

The first step is to create a service platform that standardizes the delivery and management of Internet of things services for home automation, industrial measurement, and manufacturing. Oracle and Freescale will collaborate closely to make it happen and will provide more details this week at the JavaOne conference in San Francisco.


Wanted for the Internet of Things: Ant-Sized Computers

freescalex299If the Internet is to reach everywhere—from the pills you swallow to the shoes on your feet—then computers will need to get a whole lot smaller. A new microchip that is two millimeters square and contains almost all the components of a tiny functioning computer is a promising start.

The KL02 chip, made by Freescale, is shorter on each side than most ants are long and crams in memory, RAM, a processor, and more. The genesis of the chip was a customer asking for help creating a wireless device small enough to be easily swallowed and cheap enough to be considered “digestible.” Freescale is now offering the chip for general sale, and also embarking on an R&D push to create more tiny computers that also include sensors and wireless data connections.

“The Internet of things is ultimately about services, like your thermostat connecting to the Internet and knowing when you’re coming home,” says Kaivan Karimi, director of global strategy for microcontrollers at Freescale, “but the technology those [services] are based on is embedded processing and sensors.”

If connected sensors are to be spread throughout the world around us, those technologies need to shrink in size, power consumption, and price, says Karimi. Freescale is betting that one of the best ways to do that is to integrate, into a single chip, components such as processors, memory, sensors, radios, and antennas that would usually be laid out across a circuit board.

More info here.

Freescale’s Insanely Tiny ARM Chip Will Put the Internet of Things Inside Your Body

KL0PA-keyboard-20-LR-3-660x440Chipmaker Freescale Semiconductor has created the world’s smallest ARM-powered chip, designed to push the world of connected devices into surprising places.

Announced today, the Kinetis KL02 measures just 1.9 by 2 millimeters. It’s a full microcontroller unit (MCU), meaning the chip sports a processor, RAM, ROM, clock and I/O control unit — everything a body needs to be a basic tiny computer.

The KL02 has 32k of flash memory, 4k of RAM, a 32 bit processor, and peripherals like a 12-bit analog to digital converter and a low-power UART built into the chip. By including these extra parts, device makers can shrink down their designs, resulting in tiny boards in tiny devices.

How tiny? One application that Freescale says the chips could be used for is swallowable computers. Yes, you read that right. “We are working with our customers and partners on providing technology for their products that can be swallowed but we can’t really comment on unannounced products,” says Steve Tateosian, global product marketing manager.

The KL02 is part of Freescale’s push to make chips tailored to the Internet of Things. Between the onboard peripherals and a power-management system tuned to the chemistry of current generation batteries, the KL02 is intended to be at the heart of a network of connected objects, moving from shoes that wirelessly report your steps (a natural evolution of Nike+) to pipes that warn you when they are leaking.

There are some clues we can glean about how this chip might end up inside our digestive tracts. Freescale already works with a variety of health and wellness customers. Both the Fitbit and OmniPod insulin pump use Freescale chips. It’s not hard to imagine a new generation of devices designed to monitor your internal health or release drugs and medicine from within your body. Such tiny implements, however, also creates the possibility that discarded micro-devices could soon collect in sewers and waste treatment plants.

Though Moore’s law has become largely uninteresting at the scale of desktop and laptop computers (when all you’re doing is watching videos, writing, and surfing the web, you don’t need that much power), there is still plenty of room at the bottom.

More info here.

Digi and Freescale Collaborate: The First Cloud Connected Microcontrollers

From Digi’s blog:

We have exciting news, that we announced at the Embedded World Exhibition, in Nuremberg, Germany. Embedded World hosts engineers who want to share their knowledge, present new solutions and help others reach success. That’s why we decided to announce our collaboration with Freescale there today.


Freescale and Digi® have come together to offer the first cloud connected microcontrollers. The iDigi Device Cloud™ will be integrated into the Kinetis and ColdFire microcontroller platforms. Using the iDigi Connector, an open interface for any type of device, Kinetis and ColdFire users can access the web and mobile applications development platform and device management functionality.

The Kinetis and ColdFire platforms will come out-of-the box with cloud connectivity, making the microcontrollers more efficient. The cloud will help streamline product rollouts, upgrade and service devices with ease and provide access to manage devices remotely.

If you’re attending Embedded World, Digi will demonstrate the integration of the iDigi Device Cloud on a Kinetis K53 Tower System in Hall 1 booth 1-432. The setup shows a cloud-enabled MQX RTOS application with integrated remote device management capabilities (firmware upgrade, system reboot, system information/performance, reliability metrics and alerts) as well as cloud-based information exchange of on-board peripheral status (accelerometer, potentiometer, touch sensors, ADC, PWM, LEDs.).

Embedded World Conference is determined to offer a environment to set trends and present solutions. The conference provides the perfect platform to share our latest collaborative solution that will enhance the iDigi and Freescale experience for engineers and innovators.

And, if you’re not in attendance, keep an eye on our Facebook Page and Twitter account for information from Embedded World. We’ll be updating you on the innovative ideas that come from the community of engineers who are mapping the future.