Everyone is talking about the Internet of Things (IoT) for quite a while now and for many people it is nothing special anymore, whereas others have only a sketchy picture as to what it is and its complexity. Terms like Smart Home, Autonomous Driving or Industry 4.0, most have heard of already. Though, the fact remains that we are still in the middle of this technology evolution, and this becomes more obvious when one looks at the numbers being mentioned. It is said that around 50 billion devices will be connected by the year 2020. An impressive number that speaks for this unstoppable IoT megatrend.
Today product innovation around the globe is being driven by this megatrend in which technology companies are investing a tremendous amount of time, effort and money. In recent times we have seen the development towards more complex systems. While at the beginning simple products became smart and connected through the addition of sensors and connectivity technology. The trend develops even more form products & systems towards systems of systems. This development requires a much closer collaboration between product manufacturers and system makers.
Systems are requiring ever improving energy efficiency, connectivity and system integration leading to increasing design challenges developers find themselves confronted with. The ON Semiconductor IoT Development Kit (IDK) provides the necessary features to meet those high requirements. A hardware and software platform is offered which allows developers out-of-the-box prototyping. The IDK provides everything to build connected objects or IoT objects or to create a complete system solution.
Let’s have a closer look at the features the ON Semiconductor IDK offers. The modules mounted to the board can be classified into three different types: sensors, connectivity and actuator modules. The base board itself is equipped with NCS36510 system-on-chip (SoC) with 32-bit ARM Cortex M3 processor core for simple debugging and powering up the applications. The JTAG debug interface enables accommodation of any complex software debugging task. The CPU runs on ARM mbed operating system whereas ON Semiconductor as ARM mbed partner benefits from full software support.
The ON Semiconductor IoT Development Kit (IDK) differentiates itself through the modular construction that has been employed. The processor delivers the necessary hardware resources to support the mounted modules. As far a sensor technology is concerned it offers interfaces for motion, light and touch as well as smart passive sensors for temperature, moisture, proximity and pressure. Furthermore, even a module for heart-rate medical sensors is mounted.
The extendable IDK can also be connected to a number of different daughter cards offering a variety of connectivity options e.g. wireline communication CAN and Ethernet interfaces are also available to address industrial control and factory automation applications. Moreover SubGHz, 802.15.4 MAC-based radios to enable Zigbee and Thread protocols, PLC, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and Sigfox modules guarantee wireless connectivity for any kind of IoT application purpose.
In order to make IDK a well-rounded kit, actuator options can be added to the system, with stepper and brushless motor driving, plus the ability to drive LED strings.
Finally, with the IoT Development Kit ON Semiconductor is able to offer a configurable platform that speeds up prototyping and consequently shortens time-to-market. Now developers are able to enjoy an out-of-the-box solution that is ready to use for fast turnaround from concept to production.
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