Expansion into Wi-Fi means Nordic’s ultra-low-power wireless IoT product range now covers Bluetooth, cellular IoT and Wi-Fi

Nordic Semiconductor has announced its entry into the Wi-Fi wireless IoT market with the introduction of the nRF7002, an ultra-low power, dual-band Wi-Fi 6 companion IC.

The launch, says Nordic Semiconductor, makes it one of the few companies in the world to offer all three of the world’s most popular wireless IoT technologies: Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and cellular IoT.

The nRF7002 is described as a ‘companion IC’ which means it is designed to provide seamless Wi-Fi connectivity and Wi-Fi-based locationing (SSID sniffing of local Wi-Fi hubs) when used alongside Nordic’s existing products. These include the nRF52 and nRF53 Series multiprotocol Systems-on-Chip (SoCs), and nRF91 Series cellular IoT Systems-in-Package (SiPs). The nRF7002 can also be used in conjunction with non-Nordic host devices.

The launch of the nRF7002 follows Nordic’s 2020 acquisition of the development team, core Wi-Fi expertise, and Wi-Fi IP tech assets of Imagination Technologies Group.

With the nRF7002, Nordic Semiconductor claims to bring decades of ultra-low-power wireless IoT and silicon design expertise to Wi-Fi 6, a standard which features efficiency gains that support long-life, battery-powered wireless IoT operation.

Wi-Fi forms an integral part of the smart home Matter protocol championed by Apple, Amazon, Google, Samsung, and hundreds of other companies in consumer IoT. By adding Wi-Fi to its product range Nordic will now support all three wireless protocols used in Matter. Namely: Bluetooth LE for commissioning, Thread for low power mesh networking, and Wi-Fi for high-speed wireless applications.

“We were able to bring our first Wi-Fi IC to market very quickly as a result of acquiring an extremely capable Wi-Fi team alongside a portfolio of Wi-Fi assets that team had already developed,” said Nordic CTO/EVP of R&D and Strategy, Svein-Egil Nielsen. “Nordic has also ensured that developing Nordic-based Wi-Fi 6 applications will be as simple as developing any other Nordic wireless IoT application, including using the same development tools and nRF Connect SDK.”

“The new Wi-Fi team’s relentless hard work to enable Nordic to launch its first Wi-Fi product so soon deserves huge recognition,” continued Mike Davis, Nordic’s ‪Wi-Fi Systems & Software Director. “They knew Wi-Fi was the number one missing capability requested by Nordic customers. And they knew Nordic’s customers needed this capability quickly.”‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬‬

The nRF7002 is supplied in a 6 x 6mm QFN package and is sampling now.

 

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