Nordic Semiconductor-powered beacon provides open-source development platform for developers, makers and hobbyists.

RuuviTag employs nRF52832 Bluetooth low energy SoC in its open-source beacon platform which incorporates temperature, humidity, air pressure, and acceleration sensors

Nordic Semiconductor today announces that Finnish start-up Ruuvi Innovations has selected Nordic’s nRF52832 System-on-Chip (SoC) for its open-source Bluetooth® low energy (previously known as Bluetooth Smart) sensor beacon, ‘RuuviTag’.

The RuuviTag beacon platform is designed to meet the needs of developers, makers, and hobbyists, acting as both a standard proximity beacon as well as offering temperature, humidity, air pressure, and acceleration sensors in an open-source platform that conforms to both the Apple iBeacon™ and Google Eddystone™ specifications.

The nRF52832 SoC provides RuuviTag’s wireless connectivity between beacons and Bluetooth 4.0 (and later)-equipped iOS and Android smartphones and tablets. RuuviTag has a 45mm profile and a transmission range up to 100m, and can also be used to create large mesh networks using the Wirepas Connectivity protocol. The ultra low operating characteristics of Nordic’s nRF52832 SoC extend RuuviTag’s CR2450 or CR2477 Lithium-ion (Li-ion) coin cell battery life up to 10 years.

Example applications for the RuuviTag include deployment as a remote weather station broadcasting environmental and atmospheric data to an app on a smartphone, or attachment to an object to notify the owner if it is moved. Because RuuviTag is an open-hardware and -software platform, developers and makers are free to design and share their own applications. Ruuvi Innovations also offers a range of over-the-air upgradable example application software based on Nordic’s nRF52 Software Development Kit (SDK).

The RuuviTag platform’s hardware can be used as the foundation for commercial products. The hardware can even be customized to meet specific customer requirements (for example, additional sensors or a differently shaped circuit board).

The nRF52 Series is Nordic Semiconductor’s sixth generation of ultra low power (ULP) wireless connectivity solutions. The nRF52832 features a 64MHz, 32-bit ARM Cortex M4F CPU which delivers up to 60 percent more generic processing power, offering 10 times the Floating Point performance and twice the Digital Signal Processing (DSP) performance compared to competing solutions. The 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio offers Bluetooth low energy (fully compatible with Bluetooth 4.2), ANT™, and proprietary 2.4 GHz support with -96 dB RX sensitivity and 5.5 mA peak RX/TX currents. The nRF52832 also features 512 kB Flash memory and 64 kB RAM, a fully-automatic power management system that reduces power consumption by up to 80 percent compared with the nRF51 Series, on-chip analog and digital peripherals for glueless interfacing to external components, and an NFC™ tag for consumer-friendly Touch-to-Pair.

“There are many traditional beacon providers out there but the market needs more open-source IoT [Internet of Things] sensor solutions, that’s why we have released all our hardware design and software code to the public,” says Lauri Jämsä, Chief Executive Officer of Ruuvi Innovations.

“This is our first product utilizing Nordic’s SoC, but I’m positive we will use its tools and products in the future because they seem to be in many ways better than competitive products. The company’s technical support is also excellent,” adds Jämsä.Pending a successful crowdfunding campaign scheduled for the end of May, RuuviTag will be available for delivery from September 2016.

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