Wearable, bracelet-sized development kits offer quick IoT development

January 06, 2015 // By Steve Taranovich, EDN
When Becky Oh and George Hsu told me that PNI was restructuring into two separate companies, my first thought was "Why?," but as they revealed their strategy and reasoning behind this decision I was impressed. Their decision was well-thought-out and will greatly benefit the faster growth of both companies as we approach the advent of billions of sensors on the IoT.

PNI Sensor Corp (PNI) is now being run by George Hsu, CEO, and features its flagship product the SENtral motion co-processor and its algorithms for context, activity, gesture, and pedestrian dead reckoning (PDR), as well as SENtral M&M modules .

Precision Navigation Corp is being run by Becky Oh, President and CEO (and member of the board of PNI Sensor Corp) and will continue to develop ultra-high resolution, low-noise magneto-sensor technology.

The two companies, focusing upon each of their synergistic core strengths, are co-creating a design tool called SENtrode. In keeping with the MEMS Industry Group announcement of the first open-source algorithm community in November 2014, this platform will enable designers a faster time-to-market.

SENtrode is the first wearable-sized development kit integrating sensors, PNI's SENtral sensor hub, sensor fusion algorithms, programmable processor, and wireless capabilities into a bracelet-sized form factor (Figure 1).

Figure 1 Side-by-side view of the bracelet-sized wearable design options from the SENtrode kit.

A second version of SENtrode will be offered in a separate housing fit for Internet of Things (IoT) devices, such as smart home appliances and connected sensor networks (Figures 2 and 3).

Figure 2 A view of the SENtrode development kit.

Figure 3 The SENtrode housing option

The simplicity of assembly of the SENtrode development kit is shown in a YouTube video which is here.


This is a first glimpse of some of the innovative and complete solutions to come out of the two separate companies. Keep watching in 2015 for more creative and highly useful design tools from this team and their talented designers.

SENtrode wearable development kit; www.pnicorp.com/products/sentrode