Courtesy of Nordic Semiconductor
Nordic’s nRF52840 Bluetooth 5/Bluetooth LE SoC supports gateway-free, long-range wireless connectivity between Sikom’s ‘Bluetooth Thermostat EP’ and smartphone
Nordic Semiconductor today announces that Sikom, a Trondheim/Verdal, Norway-based developer of GSM-based Internet of Things (IoT) platforms, employs Nordic’s nRF52840 Bluetooth® 5/Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE) advanced multiprotocol System-on-Chip (SoC) in its ‘Bluetooth Thermostat EP’ to support smartphone connectivity and smart-home networking. The thermostat is available to consumers and OEMs developing their own heating control systems.
The Nordic SoC’s Bluetooth 5 long-range capability enhances connection stability, boosting range, and allowing the thermostat to be configured and controlled from anywhere in the house. From a companion app on a Bluetooth 4.0 (and later) smartphone the user can control thermostat features such as comfort and economy temperature set points, week programs, vacation modes, and temperature logs.
Because the thermostat can be controlled and configured directly from the smartphone, there is no requirement for a proprietary gateway between mobile device and thermostat, lowering the cost and complexity of installation and setup. In addition, the thermostat’s Bluetooth 5 connectivity enables it to join a Sikom smart-home network and communicate directly with other wireless devices to support advanced features such as power control and limiting. The thermostat also integrates with 4G/LTE (cellular) technology to enable remote control via Sikom’s Cloud platform.
Enabled by the nRF52840 SoC’s 32-bit Arm® Cortex® M4F processor, 1MB Flash memory, and 256kB RAM, the Bluetooth Thermostat EP platform can support a variety of complex remote thermostat/heating applications. The processor has ample power to run the Bluetooth 5 RF software protocol (“stack”) and Sikom’s application software and bootloader. The SoC also supports Over-the-Air Device Firmware Updates (OTA-DFU) for future improvements.
Nordic’s nRF52840 Bluetooth 5/Bluetooth LE SoC is Nordic’s most advanced ultra low power wireless solution. The SoC supports complex Bluetooth LE and other low-power wireless applications that were previously not possible with a single-chip solution. The SoC combines the Arm processor with a 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio architecture featuring -96dB RX sensitivity and an on-chip PA boosting output power to a maximum of 8dBm. The SoC is supplied with the S140 SoftDevice, a Bluetooth 5-certified stack which supports all the features of the standard and provides concurrent Central, Peripheral, Broadcaster, and Observer Bluetooth LE roles.
“The nRF52840 is a cutting-edge platform with outstanding performance. It provides a lot of freedom in design and functionality of our thermostat, while simultaneously keeping costs down,” says Axel Jacobsen, CEO of Sikom.
“The most important features for us are the microprocessor capability and memory capacity, which enable swift development of complex applications running on a single core, without ‘hitting walls’ and wasting time on fine-tuning the performance or sacrificing functionality. The Nordic SoC’s radio sensitivity and support for Bluetooth 5 technology’s long-range feature also provides superior connection stability in difficult environments, significantly boosting range.
“The SoftDevice stability, Bluetooth 5, RTOS and multiprotocol support, and Software Development Kits (SDK) with drivers and example applications are all important features of the Nordic SoC,” adds Jacobsen.
“Nordic also offers an excellent support team with fast response and easy-to-use technical documentation, reference designs and tools, and hardware samples as required.”