Company: Silicon Labs
Category: Internet of Things Product of the Year
One of the toughest challenges IoT developers face today is ensuring connected devices will run only genuine, trusted firmware. BG22 SoCs address this need simply and efficient through Silicon Labs’ Secure Boot with Root of Trust and Secure Loader capability. The SoCs support comprehensive failure analysis by allowing developers to investigate problems without erasing flash since the software itself may be part of the root cause. Developers achieve this through Silicon Labs’ Secure Debug with lock/unlock cryptographic capability.
The BG22 family’s combination of best-in-class ultra-low transmit and receive power (3.6 mA TX at 0 dBm, 2.6 mA RX) and a high-performance, low-power Arm® Cortex®-M33 core (27 µA/MHz active, 1.2 µA sleep) delivers industry-leading energy efficiency that can extend coin cell battery life up to ten years. Target applications include Bluetooth mesh low-power nodes, smart door locks, personal healthcare and fitness devices. Asset tracking tags, beacons and indoor navigation also benefit from the SoCs’ versatile Bluetooth Angle of Arrival (AoA) and Angle of Departure (AoD) capabilities and sub-one-meter location accuracy.
IoT security is key to protecting company brands, end-user privacy and commercial viability of products. With this in mind, the BG22 family features numerous security features including Secure Boot with Root of Trust and Secure Loader (RTSL); hardware cryptographic acceleration for AES128/256, SHA-1, SHA-2 (up to 256-bit), ECC (up to 256-bit); ECDSA, and ECDH, True Random Number Generator (TRNG) compliant with NIST SP800-90 and AIS-31; ARM® TrustZone® and Secure Debug with lock/unlock.
The new portfolio offers a choice of three Bluetooth SoC products designed to address a wide range of price/performance requirements for smart home, consumer, commercial and industrial IoT applications including those requiring multi-year battery life:
– The EFR32BG22C112 SoC targets high-volume, cost-sensitive applications, providing access to 1 Mbps and 2 Mbps Bluetooth PHYs, along with a 38.4 MHz Arm Cortex-M33 core, 18 GPIOs and 352 kB of flash memory with radio characteristics of 0 dBm transmit (TX) and an industry-leading -99 dBm receive (RX) (1M PHY) sensitivity.
– The EFR32BG22C222 SoC targets applications requiring more compute power (with a 76.8 MHz M33 core), more I/O’s (26 GPIOs) and higher TX power (+6 dBm).
– The EFR32BG22C224 SoC provides IQ sampling for direction finding applications and access to 125 kB and 500 kB Bluetooth LE Coded PHYs, which can increase RX sensitivity to -106 dBm. The SoC increases the operating temperature to +125 °C and extends flash memory up to 512 kB to support applications requiring direction-finding capabilities or low-power mesh nodes.
Common features of the EFR32BG22 series include a wider operation range from 1.71 V to 3.8 V single power supply and -40 °C to 125 °C and a wide selection of MCU peripherals. A lower BOM count with fewer matching components and no need for external inductors or power amplifiers. The devices also have best-in-class RF with +20 dBm output power and up to +124.5 dB link budget and the industry’s smallest multiprotocol SoCs in a 4 mm x 4 mm QFN package.
According to the Bluetooth SIG, total annual Bluetooth device shipments are forecast to grow 26 percent by 2023 (from 4 billion units in 2019 to 5.4 billion units), and 90 percent of all Bluetooth devices will include Bluetooth Low Energy by 2023. Notable applications include healthcare where increasingly sophisticated monitoring devices are being put to use by healthcare professionals and patients directly.
Growth is also being driven by the rise of the Smart Home and wireless charging. As autonomous features become increasingly commonplace in the automotive sector, BLE has an increasingly significant role to play while.
In 2020, the changes necessary to keep people safe during everyday lives has further demonstrated the importance of reliable wireless devices and functions. For example, some applications BLE can support are in-store navigation and contactless payment, both allowing for more effective social distancing, as well as offering a solution for retargeting and proximity marketing to help support retailers recover.
Secure connectivity and extremely low power consumption will be fundamental requirements for these IoT devices. Silicon Labs designed the BG22 SoCs to meet these requirements and growth projections for the billions of Bluetooth-enabled IoT devices coming in the next few years.