Integrated processor is one-stop-shop for wearables

24th February 2015
Barney Scott

Toshiba has extended its ApP Lite family with two application processors for wearables, the TZ1031MBG and TZ1011MBG single package IoT solutions. Interest in services that monitor the duration and level of physical activity has exploded, which has increased demand for wearables such as activity monitors, smart watches, bracelets and spectacles, which promote exercise, improve nutrition and help prevent diseases related to lifestyle.

Toshiba is expanding its line-up of systematic solutions for the TZ1000 series by developing software algorithms that can be applied to measuring weak biomedical signals, such as pulse and ECG. In doing so, Toshiba is providing an evaluation environment for developers to shorten the time to market for products integrating its application processors.

The launch of the TZ1001MBG in November 2014 introduced a single-package application processor that integrated data collection sensors, data processing capability, flash memory for data storage, and a BLE controller for data communication. Building on this, the application processors expand sensing functionalities by adding a gyroscope to the TZ1031MBG and a gyroscope and magnetometer to the TZ1011MBG.

The high level integration of the application processors makes it possible to realise wearable devices without any other components. It also contributes to a smaller form factor, which enables wearable devices to be reduced in size. The processers are expressly designed for low power performance, essential for securing a longer battery life for wearable devices. Integration of a Bluetooth Low Energy controller and RF circuit allows transfer of raw and processed data to external equipment, such as smartphones and tablets.

The package for each device includes a wireless communication function, sensors, a memory and a high performance ARM Cortex-M4F with DSP, 8Mb of NOR flash memory and an FPU, which allows combinations of data from multiple sensors, both internal and external, to improve accuracy (sensor fusion). The products integrate a 24-bit high resolution delta-sigma ADC with high speed switches connected to three input channels, so as to be capable of measuring weak biomedical signals, such as the pulse and the heart’s electrical activity.

The packaging, for both the TZ1011MBG and the TZ1031MBG, measures 8.5x9.8x1.6mm. Samples are currently available, with mass production to commence in June.

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