Like every semiconductor company, we spend a lot of time talking to design
engineers about what they’re working on and the features they’re
adding to their systems. These days, we’re hearing a lot about wireless
connectivity and with it, some of the challenges that come with developing
advanced solutions. It doesn’t seem to matter what industry
they’re designing for—industrial, automotive, healthcare,
energy, infrastructure—our customers ask for flexible and scalable
tools and solutions to develop the next generation of IoT devices.
Of the various WLAN and WPAN options out there, Wi-Fi® and
Bluetooth™ are in particularly high demand. Designers
typically use a dedicated Wi-Fi/Bluetooth-enabled module to add connectivity
to their systems. However, off-the-shelf modules aren’t always as easy
to utilize. Integration with the system’s microprocessor or
microcontroller can be tricky, even for experienced designers and programmers,
which means design teams can find themselves struggling with extra iterations
of debug to make the system behave the way they want it to.
What’s more, wireless systems need to meet regional regulatory
requirements and typically need to be certified as ready-for-use before they
ship. Getting the right certifications for each region can add extra steps to
the development cycle and can add to the pressure of having to meet tight
time to market deadlines.
We decided it was time for a change. For too long now, the need to integrate
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth has added stress to the development cycle. Using separate
modules for wireless connectivity has forced designers to work with multiple
components from different suppliers and added extra time and effort to what
are already demanding timelines for delivery.
The Quick, Easy Way to Deliver Wireless at Scale
In our recent announcement, we unveiled a new platfrom that makes it easier
than ever to deliver wireless functionality. Our
i.MX RT crossover MCUs are now fully supported within
NXP’s MCUXpresso Software and Tool, which dramatically simplifies product development. With this new level of
integration, we’ve expanded the connectivity capabilities of our
edge computing and security platform. The result is new and secure, fully
scalable edge-connected platforms that combine our
i.MX RT MCUs.
Modules Made to Order
It begins with hardware. We’ve partnered with leading module providers
to create solutions that accelerate development, decrease time to market and
create processor choices. It’s all about flexibility—you choose
the best combination of MCU, wireless device and module for your design, so
you start with a tailored solution that saves time and effort. Working with
our module partners, we deliver a fully certified, platform-integrated
solution ready to go. We even offer software examples that have been tested
for use with our i.MX RT development boards for added time-savings.
Comprehensive Enablement Tools
The benefits continue when it comes time to finalize your application.
We’ve brought together all the software elements you need into our
popular, easy-to-use MCUXpresso software suite. You can mix and match elements
for edge-connected solutions, optimizing every aspect of your design using
just one familiar software development kit (SDK). For example, the upper
layers of the stack, including TCP/IP stack and application layers, will run
on an i.MX RT device. The upper layers are integrated into the host operating
system, for an added level of flexibility in how to use resources and control
the combined applications. The final application can share CPU cycles with the
Wi-Fi stack while leveraging extensive memory resources to ensure the right
levels of performance.
The integrated driver support found within the MCUXpresso SDK simplifies the
design and accelerates application development. You can use display
controllers and graphics accelerators integrated into the i.MX RT MCU or
advanced features in the i.MX 8 series, along with pre-integrated drivers for
Wi-Fi and Bluetooth that have been verified and tested to deliver the
capabilities your design is likely to need.
For Wi-Fi, we’ve ported popular LWIP stack, an open-source solution in
widespread use, to FreeRTOS. We add to that a number of fully verified and
Wi-Fi SDK Enablement Tools
||Utility for testing device-to-device performance
Example for easily connecting new devices to networks
|Command Line Interface (CLI)
Sets Wi-Fi parameters and network properties and lets you experiment
with various Wi-Fi settings and parameters
|Amazon Web Services (AWS) and Azure Cloud
Applications that provide an excellent starting framework for IoT
products, complete with device-to-cloud connection
We Make Sure It Works
We’ve invested our time and effort in this platform, so you
don’t have to. Our dedicated design teams provide expertise from
various disciplines to optimize our solutions and anticipate what customers
will need, regardless of the design team’s experience working with
Our in-house experts and trusted ecosystem partners have paid attention to all
the details so you can focus on delivery. We’ve looked at every aspect
of design, from the initial selection of features to final delivery of
certified products and we’ve anticipated future needs for wireless
applications. We’ve optimized the hardware, updated the integrated
software and written the test modules for final compliance testing.
The result is a standardized approach that makes it easier than ever to
deliver the wireless features everyone wants.
Explore the Options
To learn more about our platform-based approach to delivering wireless
connectivity solutions and to see a complete list of avalaible partner
modules, visit our dedicated webpage at