High-integration Bluetooth Smart module

October 07, 2015 // By Graham Prophet
Cypress’ fully-certified EZ-BLE PSoC module represents the highest level of integration currently available, Cypress asserts, and provides an end-to-end solution to reduce time-to-market and costs for IoT products and a wide range of wireless applications

This Bluetooth Smart module is presented as the first Bluetooth Low Energy solution to integrate programmable analogue and digital blocks in a fully-certified module. The small-form-factor module includes Bluetooth 4.1 qualification and worldwide regulatory certification, simplifying design and decreasing time-to-market. Cypress is the single supplier for silicon, software, firmware and module hardware, streamlining the customer support required to develop sensor-based, low-power systems including sports and fitness monitors, medical devices, wearable electronics, home automation solutions and game controllers.

Sensor-based systems require an analog front end (AFE) for sensing, digital control logic, a BLE radio and a microcontroller, and products with a sophisticated user interfaces require an additional touch or display IC. Based on Cypress’s PSoC 4 BLE programmable system-on-chip with an ARM Cortex-M0 core, the EZ-BLE PSoC module integrates all of the building blocks of a sensor-based system, along with Cypress’s CapSense capacitive touch-sensing functionality, two crystals, an on-board trace antenna, metal shield and passive components, all in a 11 x 11 x 1.8-mm form factor. Engineers designing with the module can apply to add the Bluetooth logo on their products by referring to Cypress’s Qualification Design Identification (QDID), a unique serial number assigned by the Bluetooth SIG. The EZ-BLE PSoC module is compliant to wireless regulatory standards and is fully-certified in key markets, including the U.S., Canada, Europe, Korea and Japan.

Cypress adds that it has abstracted the Bluetooth Low Energy protocol stack and profile configuration into a royalty-free, GUI-based BLE component that can be dragged and dropped into designs using Cypress’s PSoC Creator integrated design environment (IDE). PSoC Creator enables complete system design in a single tool. Application details for Cypress’s BLE Component are embedded in PSoC Creator with examples of all supported Bluetooth Low Energy profiles and hundreds of example projects for mixed-signal system designs.

The EZ-BLE PSoC module enables designers to create custom AFEs for sensor interfaces using programmable analogue blocks such as opamps, comparators, ADCs and DACs. Designers can integrate digital logic with the programmable digital blocks, which include timers, counters, pulse-width modulators (TCPWMs), serial communication blocks (SCBs) and universal digital blocks (UDBs). The programmable architecture reduces power consumption for battery-operated applications by offloading CPU tasks to the UDBs and it enables run-time reconfiguration of blocks, allowing the design to service multiple functions.