Weekly Bluetooth Industry Report [Mar 13, 2020]

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Packetcraft Announces World’s First Qualified Bluetooth Software Stack for LE Audio
Packetcraft, Inc. today announced its host stack and link layer software have achieved Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) qualification to Bluetooth® Core Specification version 5.2.  This is the world’s first qualification of a host stack and link layer implementing new features used by LE Audio:  LE Isochronous Channels, Enhanced Attribute Protocol, and LE Power Control.

NXP to Enable More Apps on ‘Digital’ Car Key
Carmakers, smartphone designers and chip suppliers have been developing “digital car keys” for some time. Thanks to the efforts by the Car Connectivity Consortium (CCC), a cross-industry organization, “The industries have come together on one standard as to how to open a car,” explained Rainer Lutz, director of digital key and NFC segments at NXP Semiconductors.

Hong Kong to install more smart lamp posts
A study has recommended that Hong Kong’s government should take forward a pilot scheme to install multi-functional smart lamp posts, while keeping privacy issues in mind. After reviewing the design and operation of smart lampposts as well as the functions and technologies employed for applications, the committee supported installation of devices that do not have privacy concerns. These include LED lighting, meteorological sensors, air quality sensors, thermal detectors as well as radio-frequency identification tags, Geo-QR codes and Bluetooth beacons to identify a lamppost’s location.

BLE modules include antenna, encryption technology, six configurable I/O pins
Würth Elektronik announced the Bluetooth Low Energy 5.1 module Proteus-III and the proprietary version Thyone-I. The modules, measuring only 8 × 12 × 2 mm, with integrated antenna, encryption technology and six configurable IO pins, are based on the Nordic Semiconductor nRF52840 chipset. They can be used for IoT and M2M applications, for example, to build radio-based maintenance interfaces and sensor networks. The WE-ProWare firmware from Würth Elektronik, which has been industrially proven over many years, makes the modules extremely versatile.

Enabling Cloud Connectivity to All MCUs and MPUs, Microchip Launches a Range of Embedded IoT Solutions for Rapid Prototyping
Due to the fragmented nature of the Internet of Things (IoT) marketplace, increasing project complexity and costs, today’s developers face more challenges in design decisions than ever before. These challenges lead to extended development times, increased security threats and failed solutions. Continuing to execute upon its core strategy of delivering smart, connected and secure systems, Microchip Technology Inc. (MCHP) today announced its cloud agnostic, turnkey, full-stack embedded development solutions.

Laird Releases New Bluetooth 5.1 Module
Laird Connectivity released the new BL653 embedded Bluetooth 5.1 module series which enables industrial OEMs to implement longer range BLE applications in the harshest industrial operating environments. The BL653 is a complete multi-protocol embedded wireless offering with processing capability, Bluetooth 5.1 direction finding with angle of arrival (AoA) and angle of departure (AoD), and extended temperature range ideal for challenging RF environments and wireless industrial IoT applications.

What’s the Difference Between Bluetooth LE and Bluetooth Classic Audio—and How Will It Impact Hearing Aids?
Bluetooth LE Audio improves upon Classic Audio in a number of ways, and the opportunities for developers are exciting. Check out some potential use cases for the new audio standard. The theme for World Hearing Day 2020 was simple: “Don’t let hearing loss limit you.”

Bluetooth LE sensor and gateway solution enables track and trace, asset tracking, condition monitoring, safety, and indoor navigation
Nordic Semiconductor today announces that Niruha Systems, a Pune, India-based technology company, has selected Nordic’s nRF52832 Bluetooth Low Energy (Bluetooth LE) System-on-Chip (SoC) as the main processor and low power wireless connectivity solution for its ‘nible’ ecosystem, a beacon/sensor and gateway combination solution designed primarily for use in asset tracking, condition monitoring, workforce safety, and indoor navigation applications. 

SoC from InnoPhase solves 3 IoT problems
Turning an ordinary product into a smart product requires some creative engineering. Adding connectivity, control and motion to systems that people use every day raises challenges around size, battery life and functionality. To accommodate smart technology, engineers and designers need to make products smaller and, in turn, the technology has to be small to maintain a similar form factor.

A Brief Guide to Bluetooth Low Energy IPs on the Market
Keep this guide in your back pocket for the next time you’re designing a device that requires BLE connectivity. IP is an acronym that is showing up in many semiconductor-related press releases, product announcements, and datasheets. In fact, Imagination Technologies recently announced its latest BLE IP, the iEB110, which the company is calling a “complete Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) v5.2 solution.” With this new IP entering the BLE market, it may be useful to pinpoint the value of IPs and survey other BLE IPs designers should be aware of.

Medical device makers race to understand scope of SweynTooth vulnerabilities
Medical-technology companies are working quickly to assess the cybersecurity of their health care devices following public disclosure this week of a suite of serious security problems in common low-energy Bluetooth communication systems. Millions of devices, including many medical devices, could be hacked and shut down because of flaws in low-power versions of the ubiquitous wireless communications technology, researchers at the Singapore University of Technology and Design disclosed in a paper last month.

HKCERT Releases New Study to Raise Security Awareness of Bluetooth Low Energy Devices
The applications of the Internet of Things (IoT) are becoming more diverse with the rapid development of wireless technology. Each type of IoT devices has to adopt the appropriate wireless technology in accordance with their application requirements. Among various wireless technologies, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) has become one of the most widely used wireless technology for IoT devices due to its low power consumption, low cost and feasibility on applications. BLE is used in many fields, including smart home, healthcare, entertainment and industry, etc.

Ambiq Micro’s Next-Generation Subthreshold Power-Optimized Technology (SPOT) Platform Features CEVA’s Bluetooth Low Energy IP
CEVA, Inc. (NASDAQ: CEVA), the leading licensor of wireless connectivity and smart sensing technologies, today announced that Ambiq Micro, the leader in ultra-low power solutions has licensed CEVA’s RivieraWaves Bluetooth® low energy IP for use in its next-generation Subthreshold Power-Optimized Technology (SPOT) platforms integrating Bluetooth connectivity. CEVA’s Bluetooth low energy (BLE) IP is already powering Ambiq Micro’s Apollo3 Blue Family Wireless System-on-Chip (SoC) that features in applications requiring intelligence everywhere, from wearables to animal trackers to smart home devices from the world’s biggest brands.

Wayfinding helps Abbott Northwestern patients navigate 2.7 million square feet
Staff at Abbott Northwestern Hospital, part of health system Allina Health, both based in Minneapolis, know that coming to a large hospital in the city creates anxiety for most patients. It is difficult to know where to park, where to go once you park or which exit is closest to the location you are going to, among other things.

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