Freescale sets up Thread beta development program for IoT product programmes

November 12, 2014 // By Graham Prophet
Thread early adopters gain a head start, Freescale says, in developing connected products for the home, leveraging the power, size, and performance advantages of Kinetis W series wireless MCUs

As a founding member of Thread Group, an industry alliance focused on creating a simple, secure and low-power network for the connected home, Freescale Semiconductor has announced today its Thread beta development program. Freescale is making its Thread software and evaluation platform available to select developers to encourage adoption of the new Thread IP-based mesh networking protocol aimed at creating a better way to connect devices in the home.

Thread is a low-power wireless mesh network protocol that runs on new and existing 802.15.4 networks and is built on technologies such as IPv6 and 6LoWPAN. Designed specifically for connecting devices in the home, Thread provides secure communication that connects devices to each other and to the cloud for easy control and access from anywhere. Unlike other technologies, which need to translate protocols to IP packets, Thread natively carries IP from the cloud to the end device, resulting in a simpler, more efficient solution.

Freescale's beta development kit includes the Thread stack software, integrated on Kinetis wireless MCU platforms, so developers can focus on their unique applications and differentiators. Early adopters can start product planning and development now, and potentially deliver the first Thread-enabled and Thread-certified products to the market in 2015.

Freescale’s Thread implementation is built on low-power Kinetis W series MCUs, integrating 2.4 GHz RF transceivers with ARM Cortex-M0+/M4 cores. The Thread beta development kit includes, the company says, everything needed to evaluate and develop Thread-enabled products and to test them in a multi-node network environment. Accepted beta-programme companies receive: Kinetis KW2x Tower boards, USB dongles, samples and the Thread stack, which includes precompiled Thread libraries and demo application code.

The Thread Group;