Forget the IoT, now it's time for the IoD

5th December 2017
Alice Matthews

Global developer and manufacturer of intelligent graphic display modules, 4D Systems, has announced the latest addition to the range with its smallest LCD display yet. At 0.9" and powered by the popular WiFi enabled ESP8266, it is suitable for miniature IoT projects. The Internet of Displays is the company’s range of miniature feature rich displays that offer small colour displays with integrated WiFi and a microSD/HDC slot.

The IoD-09 is the 0.9" series of full colour, 80x160 pixel TFT LCD displays. It can display full colour images, animations and icons. The new modules come in two variants: through-hole (IoD-09TH) and surface mount (IoD-09SM). The through-hole module is designed for hobbyists and prosumers, which can potentially be integrated quickly and easily into any product. The surface mount module is aimed at mass production integration.

The module is designed around the ESP8266 System-On-a-Chip (SoC) from Espressif. It comes with 802.11 b/g/e/I support as well as WPA/WPA2, WEP/TKIP/AES and STA/AP/STA+AP/P2P operational mode support. There are six GPIOs available allowing digital input/output as well as various communication protocols. Available interfaces include SPI, I2C, UART and 1-wire communications.

A micro-SD slot allows the use of off-the-shelf high capacity memory cards from 4GB to a maximum of 32GB. FAT16 and FAT32 file accesses are supported. The module also comes with 4Mbit of flash memory for user application code and data, as well as 128Kb of SRAM (80Kb available for the user).

The IoD-09 series is highly recommended to be powered from a 4.0-5.5V source with +1A current capability for display stability.

The IoD-09 can be programmed with the 4D Systems Workshop4 integrated development environment (IDE) or through the Arduino IDE. Workshop4 provides powerful graphics using the GFXdloIoD09 graphics library specifically for the IoD-09 series through a drag and drop style graphical user interface (GUI). The graphics library can be downloaded from the 4D Systems github repository here, which also comes with source demo applications. Workshop4 is available for free download from the 4D Systems website.

The IoD-09 Starter Kit, which is available on 4D Systems website, comes with an IoD display module, 4D-UPA programmer and a 4GB micro-SD card. First time buyers are recommended to purchase the starter kit, which provides all the hardware to get up and running.

According to the company, no other device on the market provides as many features in such a small form factor. The IoD-09 minimises the cost and time impact of display circuitry design, making it a suitable local display of wirelessly connected IoT sensors.

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