In a move to expand its connectivity portfolio Texas Instruments launched an affordable Bluetooth Low Energy (LE) wireless microcontroller (MCU) family. The company is offering the MCU at half the cost of the closest competitor making it attractive to the large volume markets.
The MCUs feature best-in-class standby current and radio-frequency (RF) performance, for the SimpleLink Bluetooth LE CC2340 family pricing is as low as $0.79, encouraging the expansion of Bluetooth LE connectivity to more products in more markets.
The CC2340R2 and CC2340R5 wireless MCU, follow a long history of previous successful wireless connectivity products. The Microcontrollers in this family offer flash memory of 256KB and 512KB respectively, allowing for a great deal of code. With the proliferation of Bluetooth LE applications, designers are requiring more memory than previously, and memory can easily remotely update software. The CC2340 family of MCUs features 36KB RAM with over-the-air download support.
Mark Powell CEO of Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), the standards organization that oversees Bluetooth technology, said recently, “Industry-wide, 5 billion Bluetooth enabled devices are forecast to ship in 2022. The commitment and involvement of Bluetooth SIG members like Texas Instruments allow Bluetooth technology to meet the growing demands for enhanced wireless connectivity in a wider range of applications.”
The industry-leading standby current is less than 830 nA, which comes in at 40 percent lower than typical competitors. The reduction in standby current helps with expanding battery lifecycles for up to ten years, something that seems to be occurring in many low-power and low-energy devices. That means a coin cell battery can be utilized for wireless connectivity directly from the shelf. The CC2340 family also features operating temperatures from -40 to 125°C, to help with a stable connection across applications, from indoor applications such as medical laboratories to outdoor locations such as EV charging stations or smart meters.
With increased memory, longer battery life, and a broader temperature range, all with a significantly reduced price range. Developers will be able to create greater connectivity in more devices. The areas that can see expansion are smart home hubs and personal electronics. All this takes advantage of the CC2340 MCUs output power range of up to +8 dBm.
Developers can request samples as well as a development kit (LP-EM-CC2340R5) which is priced at USD $39. The CC2340 family of new wireless MCUs is expected to be in volume production in the first half of 2023. The pricing can be as low as $0.79 for a 1000-unit quantity.
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