Module Makes Cellular IoT Highly Accessible

Nordic Semiconductor’s nRF9160 System-in-Package (SiP) has received GCF certification—the trusted mobile communications industry ‘quality mark’ for compliance to the 3GPP LTE specification and global cellular network interoperability—along with separately required FCC and CE regulatory certifications. This means the nRF9160 SiP is approved for deployment in cellular networks and cellular IoT product applications globally. General availability of the nRF9160 SiP will make cellular IoT wireless technology accessible to any application due to the unique ease with which the module can be designed-in. Applications include asset monitoring and tracking, utility metering, industrial (machinery) connectivity and predictive maintenance, smart city and infrastructure, agrotech (smart agriculture), and medical.

 

Measuring 10 x 16 x 1mm in size, the nRF9160 SiP is suitable for wearable consumer and medical devices yet is a complete solution that integrates everything a cellular connection and IoT application may need beyond requiring just an external battery, SIM, and antenna.

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Nordic partnered with Qorvo to make a System-in-Package that more closely resembles an integrated chip than a module. The nRF9160 SiP leverages Qorvo’s RF front-end, advanced packaging, and MicroShield technology. The nRF9160 SiP supports global operation with a single SiP variant via Nordic’s multimode LTE-M / NB-IoT modem, SAW-less transceiver, and a custom RF front-end solution from Qorvo. 

 

In parallel, the nRF9160 SiP is the first cellular IoT module to incorporate Arm’s latest Arm Cortex M-33 CPU core. This is supported by 1 MB of Flash and 256 kB of RAM on-board memory. The nRF9160 SiP is also the first module to incorporate Arm’s state-of-the-art Arm TrustZone and Arm CryptoCell security for Internet-level encryption and application protection. Both these technologies are designed for highly energy-efficient embedded IoT products that require the highest levels of performance in processing, power consumption, and security.

 

 The nRF9160 SiP has 1MB of Flash plus 256 kB of RAM on-board memory with a broad range peripheral set, analog and digital interfaces, 32 GPIOs, a stand-alone modem with full LTE capability, plus a multiband RF front-end. Another unique feature is integrated GPS support to allow a combination of GPS and cellular data to be used for more accurate positioning than either technology is capable of when used in isolation.

 

The nRF9160 is supported with a development kit, SiP module samples, LTE-M firmware, and an SDK with application example for cloud connectivity. This includes Nordic’s ‘nRF Connect for Cloud’ cloud-based device management tool and ‘nRF Connect for Desktop’ PC-based tool, plus support for Segger Embedded Studio. For more details, checkout on the nRF9160 SiP module datasheet and the nRF9160 Development Kit.

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