Bluetooth Low-Energy Data Transfer Takes Place

WINSTON-SALEM, NCAt ARM Techcon3 in Santa Clara, CA last month, Triad Semiconductor and Z-Focus Technology Group demonstrated the world's first software-based, real-time Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) data transfer. This demonstration was based on the BLE v0.9 prototyping specification. The firms wirelessly streamed real-time digitized signals from Triad's Mocha development system to a PC display. The system consists of the Z-Focus BLE-ZTM single-mode BLE stack running on Triad's ARM Cortex-M0-based Mocha development system. The BLE wireless connection is enabled by EM Microelectronics' EM9301 BLE radio.

Triad's Mocha family of via-configurable arrays (VCAs) combines low-power Cortex-M0 32-bit processor performance with Triad's VCA technology for rapid mixed-signal, system-on-achip (SoC) design. The flexible FPGA-based Mocha development system allows customers and partners, as demonstrated by Z-Focus, to quickly port software and develop mixed-signal prototypes of Mocha SoC solutions.

According to Mikhail Galeev, President of Z-Focus, "Markets have shown a need for wireless devices that use minuscule amounts of power, such as that available from a coin-cell battery, while still being able to communicate with prevalent Bluetooth devices." BLE is an emerging wireless standard that will be used in ultra-low-power medical, fitness, and consumer devices. Although the BLE v0.9 used in this demonstration is a prototyping specification, BLE will be present in a billion cell phones within a few years. It is expected to enable hundreds of millions of wireless devices, such as blood-pressure monitors, glucose monitors, heart monitors, and fitness loggers, to wirelessly provide vital data to healthcare workers, patients, athletes, and fitness devotees.

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