NEC Electronics today introduced its three new 16-bit All Flash microcontrollers (MCUs) with embedded IEEE802.15.4-compliant 2.4 gigahertz (GHz) radio frequency (RF) transceiver for ZigBee® RF4CE, an industry standard for remote control in consumer electronics. The new MCUs are ideal for RF remote control and provide the lowest level of power consumption in the industry. The three new MCUs come with 56 pins and 8x8mm quad flat no-leads (QFN) packages, and part numbers differ according to their flash memory capacity: the µPD78F8056 offers 64 kilobytes (KB) of flash memory, the µPD78F8057 has 96 KB, and the µPD78F8058 has 128 KB.
To support development tasks of the ZigBee RF4CE applications, NEC Electronics also provides a ZigBee RF4CE software development kit (SDK), which includes a ZigBee RF4CE stack library and a three-channel real-time sniffer, capable of simultaneously monitoring packets from the three RF4CE frequency channels, as well as an evaluation board with NEC Electronics’ µPD78F8058 MCU.
To align with advanced digital TVs, set-top boxes (STBs), Blu-ray™ disc devices and other audio-visual (AV) home entertainment devices, radio frequency remote controls alleviates several shortcomings of infra-red remote controls, such as unidirectional communication and line-of-sight limitations. The two-way communication in RF4CE remote controls enables advanced home entertainment systems to support sophisticated features. By eliminating line-of-sight problems, AV systems can form networks of their own for command-and-control purpose, thereby enhancing the user’s experience. Security features of the RF4CE standard authenticate legitimate devices and protect data exchanges within its network.
NEC Electronics began providing ZigBee-based solutions in 2004. To meet market expectations for RF remote control based on ZigBee RF4CE specifications, NEC Electronics developed these ultra-low-power MCUs integrated with a low-power IEEE802.15.4-compliant radio transceiver in one package. In addition to the RF4CE application, these MCUs also can be used for 802.14.5 wireless networking.