Heart rate monitoring sensor lowers cost of heart rate measurement

Designed to reduce the cost and complexity of wrist-based heart rate monitoring (HRM) applications, the Si1144 has a low-power optical sensor module, paired with an EFM32 Gecko microcontroller running the company’s HRM algorithm.

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GPS/GLONASS receiver is sensitive for low power devices

Suitable for power-sensitive applications, such as wearable devices, the u-blox 8 GPS/GLONASS receiver addresses power sensitive usage.
Compared with the earlier u-blox 7, it has increased tracking sensitivity, increased by 4dBm to -166 dBm. The enhanced odometer functionality, a new geofencing feature, and optimised pre-set power save modes can halve the power requirements for sport products, says the company.
AssistNow boosts GNSS acquisition performance, available online, offline or as an autonomous service. Positioning makes it suitable for all battery powered devices, especially wearables and sports tracking.
u blox 8 is pin-compatible with u blox 7. It will be available as a chip and as modules in several form factors. Customer samples will be available by Q2 2016.

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IoT security has wireless user-authentication

Smartphones and wearables can be used to authenticate IoT devices, home-automation applications, and secure data storage via Bluetooth Smart technology. STMicroelectronics and ClevX, an IP developer for portable storage and mobile device manufacturers have announced what they believe is the world’s first DataLock-secured encrypted portable storage media with Bluetooth Smart wireless user-authentication.
For the first time, users can interact with secure portable storage (full-disk, XTS-AES 256bit encryption) from smartphones or wearable devices where all user data on the drive is encrypted and can be locked or unlocked using single- or multi-factor authentication. The technology is suited for healthcare, home automation and security, secure-access control systems, and portable data storage.
Luca Difalco, VP of marketing, STMicroelectronics’ Americas region said: “While we’re demonstrating the capability in an easy-to-use hardware-encrypted secure USB-Drive, the elegance and versatility of the solution is provided by an application that we can add to our BlueNRG device to make lock-down security accessible via Bluetooth Smart.”
The two companies have reference designs for secure portable storage media, including flash, hard-disk, and solid-state disk drives. They use ST’s Bluetooth Smart chips (BlueNRG) and low power STM32L0 MCUs and are immediately available for licensing and partnerships, including both ST/ClevX-based hardware and firmware in addition to the related smartphone and wearables apps.
The reference designs are OS-host agnostic. USB drives with the DataLock BT technology operate across all computer platforms and embedded systems while providing various easy-to-use security layers (including a wireless lock/unlock mechanism, phone as an authentication factor, phone + PIN, or phone + PIN + userID/location/time). The reference designs support USB Remote Management, for corporate deployments and remote password resets, drive disabling and erasing, and successful implementation of corporate-wide policies.
Lev Bolotin, Founder/CEO, ClevX, LLC notes: “Using ST and ClevX technologies, the DataLock BT Security solution protects data on a USB. . . Consumers, healthcare workers, mobile professionals, and corporations can improve their productivity and security on-the-go by using their phones to authenticate themselves to their USB drives and change security options, as required.”

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Wireless charging ICs offer dual mode power capability for quick charge

Dual-mode Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) Qi 1.2 and AirFuel Alliance (PMA) SR1E medium power 15W capability has been added to the Semtech TS80000 wireless charging portfolio.
The ICs support the increased battery capacity for quick charging smart phones, tablets, phablets, and medical and industrial devices.
The company’s medium power wireless charging technology can be integrated into existing portable devices as well as infrastructure and automotive applications. The TS80K devices can support both receiver and transmitter applications. The company also provides reference designs and evaluation kits to implement the technology.
Key feature are the scalability. According to the company, this is the only product on the market that supports from 100mW low power wearable solutions to 100W high power solutions for industrial tools, medical equipment and “connected” furniture applications.
Multi-mode receiver and output power from 100mW to 20W allow compatibility between all transmitters supporting any of the three industry standards.
Multi-mode transmitter for all power levels, from 100mW to 40W allow embedded charging capability in furniture, vehicles and public venues that can support all three standards based on a single, cost-effective platform, says the company.

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