Design Con 2015

CSR platforms capitalize on Android’s Native Support for Bluetooth Smart

-July 21, 2013

Gone are the days when it would take many, many months to implement Bluetooth into a design back in the early days of the standard. Imagine having the tools to create a device or app that can quickly and simply connect to the huge ecosystem of seven billion devices around the world.

Check out this video regarding a Bluetooth Smart overview by Bluetooth Tech:

Now designers can bring their products to this connected world with ease and with lightning fast time to market and reach a wider customer base than ever possible.

I had the opportunity recently to discuss this remarkable and flexible addition to the Bluetooth family with Paul Williamson, Director of uEnergy Platforms at CSR. CSR plc announced the launch of its second generation Bluetooth® Smart (also referred to as Bluetooth Low Energy) platforms, designed to give greater flexibility to developers looking to create low-power wireless accessories. The CSR1010™ and CSR1011™ will provide developers with end-to-end solutions for a range of devices, including HIDs such as wireless remote controls, mice and innovative ‘appcessories’.

The CSR1010 (with 12 IOs) and CSR1011 (with 32 IOs) are μEnergy platform devices. The μEnergy families are CSR's single-mode Bluetooth low energy products for the Bluetooth Smart market. This IC has increased application code and data space for greater application development flexibility. The ICs enable ultra-low power connectivity and basic data transfer for applications previously limited by the power consumption, size constraints and complexity of other wireless standards. In addition, the platform provides everything required to create a Bluetooth low energy product with RF, baseband, MCU, qualified Bluetooth v4.0 stack and customer application running on a single IC.

The CSR1010 functional block diagram shows the high level of integration designed into this IC

The news follows an announcement from Google and Bluetooth Special Interest Group that Android will include native support for Bluetooth Smart Ready and Bluetooth Smart devices in the next version of its operating system, meaning 75% of smartphones[1] will be able to integrate seamlessly with a plethora of Bluetooth Smart Ready devices.

This is a huge opportunity for developers looking to create innovative low-energy wireless devices, and more functional mobile apps.

Bluetooth Smart enables low-power connectivity and basic data transfer for applications previously limited by the power consumption, size constraints and complexity of other wireless standards. CSR1010 and CSR1011 are based on CSR’s qualified Bluetooth Smart radio and offer a number of improvements on its first-generation platforms. 

Increased memory for advanced and more flexible application space

Offering 128KB of memory, the new platforms offer up to double the amount of memory on its previous version and six times the customer application space. This provides an environment designed for more innovative and feature rich designs. 

 

Simple optimized power consumption

The new platforms make use of the µEnergy® hardware modem. The modem and the ultra-low power programmable IO controller can communicate with sensors and peripheral devices, without using the integrated microprocessor. This minimizes power consumption and reduces data transfer latency. These features ensure that system level power consumption is minimized.

 

Simplified design and low cost of ownership

The company has made the design process simpler by incorporating a single 50 ohm output pin, removing the need for a Balun and reducing the BOM and print circuit board design complexity. In addition, the on-chip switch mode power supply can be directly operated from a range of battery sources, without the need for external regulators.

They are also offering a software development kit, example applications and hardware layout examples to provide a flexible rapid development environment for Bluetooth Smart solutions. The company has low cost of ownership for a Bluetooth Smart SDK and tools (including compilers) at $499.

Development kits

The CSR1010 Development Kit offers a compact pcb with peripherals to demonstrate proximity tag operation. The CSR1011 Development Kit offers a pin header with full access to the CSR1011 IO enabling easy prototyping and interface to external devices.

 

The CSR µEnergy SDK provides a complete graphical code development environment for the CSR µEnergy single-chip uEnergy products 

CSR also offers a ready to use set of reference designs for the CSR1010 and CSR1011 that are Bluetooth SIG certified and FCC and ETSI compliant.

Gaming accessories provider Mad Catz has selected the CSR1011 platform for its C.T.R.L.R Wireless GamePad, R.A.T.M Wireless Mobile Gaming Mouse and M.O.U.S.9 Wireless Mouse and both platforms are now available to customers across the world.

For more information visit the CSR website.

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