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April 7, 2015

Wearable tech gets Bluetooth boost with Dialog’s DA14680 chip

'[Wearable-on-a-Chip' also extends battery life.


Dialog Semiconductor has revealed details of a new ‘Wearable-on-Chip’ that uses Bluetooth technology and boasts an extended battery life.

The DA14680 SmartBond chip is a small, ultra-low integrated circuit that will enable designers to create fully hosted wearable computing products.

The solution includes flexible processing power, flash memory for virtually unlimited execution space, dedicated circuitry for sensor control, analogue and digital peripherals optimised for wearables, and an advanced power management unit.

With the DA14680, wearables will be more energy efficient, facilitating smaller form factors and lower system cost by eliminating several external chips from wearable product design.

According to Berg Insights, the wearable market is predicted to reach approximately 170 million units by 2019.

The DA14680’s ultra-low power 30uA/MHz ARM Cortex-M0 application processor may have been programmed to a maximum clock frequency of 96MHz.

The chip also featured end-to-end banking-level encryption via a hardware crypto engine with elliptic curve cryptology (ECC).

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The device integrates I2C and SPI buses, three white LED drivers, a temperature sensor, multi-channel DMA, and an eight channel, ten bit ADC.

It also uses intelligent power management, featuring system power rails and a Li-ion/LiPo battery charger and fuel gauge.

The construction of the DA14680 was accelerated using Dialog’s SmartSnippets software development environment, example application code and a power profiler for real-time, power-optimised coding.

The first chips will be out to sample in the second quarter of 2015.

Sean McGrath, Senior Vice President and General Manager for Connectivity, Automotive and Industrial Business Group at Dialog Semiconductor, said: "The wearables market is fiercely competitive in terms of design aesthetics, cost, functionality, battery life and product life cycle.

"Dialog’s Bluetooth Smart Wearable-on-Chip gives our customers significant competitive advantage with respect to all of these factors, feeling them to concentrate on innovation for differentiating functionality to add to the next generation of wearables.

"With its feature-rich functionality, smallest size and lowest power, the DA14680 will also address other emerging IoT applications."

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