STMicroelectronics (ST) has updated the TouchGFX
user-interface software framework for STM32 microcontrollers, adding new
features that enable smoother and more dynamic user interfaces and lower demand
on the memory and CPU.
TouchGFX is a free tool in the STM32 ecosystem.
Comprising two parts—TouchGFX Designer PC tool for designing and configuring
rich user interfaces, and TouchGFX Engine software that runs on the end-device
to secure high UI performance—the latest version 4.12 contains updates to both.
Users can now build sophisticated user interfaces on one-chip display solutions
without external RAM or flash, save power for longer battery life, and benefit
from easier development to get to market faster.
In TouchGFX Engine, a partial framebuffer mode now allows
the buffer to operate using as little as 6 KB of RAM. A fully functioning user
interface can now have just 16 KB of RAM, so that small STM32 MCUs can deliver
great user experiences without external memory. Also new, 8-bit luminance (L8)
with 16-bit, 24-bit, and 32-bit palettes reduces demand for flash memory. Even
with this smaller memory, TouchGFX maximizes performance by leveraging the
STM32 Chrom-ART Accelerator to accelerate graphics and handle sophisticated
effects, ST. There is also a new cacheable container with dynamic bitmap that
reduces CPU loading to run smooth and fluid animations at high frame rates.
System developers can also now choose 6-bit color depth,
which saves both RAM and flash while making 64 colors available for creating
entry-level GUIs. Support for external non-memory-mapped flash is also new and
helps build basic user interfaces within tight system resources.
The updates to TouchGFX Designer include extensions to
the powerful set of customizable widgets, adding features such as Scale and
Rotate that increase the power of simple drag-and-drop programming. Custom
triggers and actions reduce reliance on coding to create sophisticated
features, and a new Image tab lets users quickly configure individual
attributes such as image format, dither algorithm, and layout rotation. There
are also performance improvements that accelerate automatic code generation and
reduce loading time, as well as new easy-to-use functions for guiding text,
such as bring-forward and send-to-back.
The complete TouchGFX Suite, including TouchGFX Designer and TouchGFX Engine, is available to download free of charge from www.st/com/touchgfxdesigner.
STMicroelectronics | www.st.comSponsor this Article
Circuit Cellar's editorial team comprises professional engineers, technical editors, and digital media specialists. You can reach the Editorial Department at email@example.com, @circuitcellar, and facebook.com/circuitcellar