Multi-radio and gateway modules feature concurrent Wi-Fi and dual-mode Bluetooth connectivity

24 October 2018

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U-blox have announced the NINA-W15 multi-radio and gateway module series, which can simultaneously support both Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n connections and dual-mode Bluetooth connectivity.

Such connectivity also includes support for both Bluetooth low energy and Bluetooth BR/EDR. Concurrent support for these radio interfaces delivers much design versatility. The modules will be particularly useful in products (such as gateways and hubs) that need to connect local Bluetooth and/or Wi-Fi peripherals to a wider-area network.

Said Stefan Berggren, senior product marketing manager, Product Center Short Range Radio at U-blox “The NINA-W15 modules offer the ideal combination of radio interfaces, security features, proven connectivity software, and a small footprint necessary to enable cost-effective industrial and medical applications.

“Several industries are focusing on digitalisation and a common scenario is to connect a huge number of sensors and actuators to a back-end system or to cloud service, for analysis and visualisation – or even controlling applications.”

Key applications for the modules include industrial automation, such as machine control, industrial terminal and remote controls, building automation, and smart building/home equipment (such as HVAC and lighting control). Other potential use cases include retail point-of-sale terminals, telematics control units, and medical equipment, including defibrillators and urology monitors.

The NINA-W15 modules (whose production is planned for Q1-2019) will help IoT device developers to secure their designs by supporting features such as secure boot, Wi-Fi enterprise security, end-to-end security, Bluetooth secure connections, and secure simple pairing. The modules are also supplied with pre-flashed U-blox connectivity software.

This has been proven in the market for 15 years, and supports several connectivity use cases, such as multiple individually-controlled connections, simultaneous GATT protocol and Serial Port Service, and simultaneous peripheral and central role. These features can be accessed by a host microcontroller, by using simple AT commands to configure and control the modules, and to control communications with external Bluetooth and Wi-Fi devices.

The modules are compact and available with an internal antenna (NINA-W152, measuring 10 x 14 x 3.8 mm) or a pin through which to drive an external antenna (NINA-W151, measuring 10 x 10.6 x 2.2 mm). They are part of the NINA family of pin-compatible short-range radio standalone modules, enabling designers to evolve existing products that already use single-radio NINA modules to support multiple radio interfaces, or to design new product lines that offer a variety of radio interface options.

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