Microchip Technology Inc. announced its next-generation Bluetooth® Low Energy (LE) solutions. Qualified to the latest Bluetooth 4.2 standard, the IS1870 and IS1871Bluetooth LE RF ICs, along with the BM70 module, expand Microchip's existing Bluetooth portfolio and carry both worldwide regulatory and Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) certifications. These new offerings are ideal for Internet of Things and Bluetooth Beacon applications, and make it easy for designers to take advantage of the low power consumption and simplicity of Bluetooth LE connectivity.
Microchip's new Bluetooth LE devices include an integrated, certified Bluetooth 4.2 firmware stack. Developers can expect up to 2.5 times faster data transfer speeds and greater connection security, with government-grade (FIPS-based) secure connection support. Data is sent and received over the Bluetooth link using Transparent UART mode, making it easy to integrate with any processor or the hundreds of Microchip's PIC® microcontrollers that have a UART interface. The module also supports standalone "hostless" operation for beacon applications.
The optimized power profile of these new devices minimizes current consumption for extended battery life, in compact form factors as small as 4x4 mm for the RF ICs and 15x12 mm for the module. The module options include RF regulatory certifications, or non-certified (unshielded/antenna-less) for smaller and more remote antenna designs that will undergo end-product emission certifications.
Microchip's Bluetooth LE modules include all of the hardware, software and certifications that designers need. Developers can leverage Microchip's Bluetooth Qualified Design ID (QDID) to easily list their products with the Bluetooth SIG. Embedded Bluetooth stack profiles include GAP, GATT, ATT, SMP and L2CAP, as well as proprietary services for Transparent UART. All modules are configurable using Microchip's Windows® OS-based tools.
Microchip also announced the BM70 Bluetooth Low Energy PICtail™/PICtail Plus daughter board. This new tool enables code development via USB interface to a PC, or by connecting to Microchip's existing microcontroller development boards, such as the Explorer 16, PIC18 Explorer and PIC32 I/O Expansion Board. The BM-70-PICTAIL is available now for $89.99 each.
The IS1870 Bluetooth LE RF IC is available in a 6x6 mm, 48-pin QFN package, for $1.79 each in 1,000 unit quantities. The IS1871 is expected to be available in November, in a 4x4 mm, 32-pin QFN package for $1.76 each in 1,000 unit quantities. The 30-pin BM70 Bluetooth LE modules are available, with or without built-in PCB antennas, starting at $4.99 each in 1,000-unit quantities.