Microcontrollers(510)

Smart Home Audio(284)

Alexa Connect Kit Platform

Build Smart IoT Devices Easily with NuMircro M032 and Alexa Connect Kit (ACK)

ACK-HMCU_01

It is now easier than ever to build Internet of Things (IoT) devices. One of the most significant barriers to IoT adoption has been the complexity of integration with existing information technology (IT) and ecosystem systems. Thanks to the efforts of Amazon Web Services (AWS), Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) reduces the barriers to IoT adoption, allowing simpler implementations, and making it easier to deploy new IoT devices and services and to scale quickly. 

A typical IoT device consists of three major functional blocks: 

1. Network connectivity: Usually a Wi-Fi System-on-Chip (SoC) provides physical and link layers connection to customer’s home Wi-Fi network.

2. IoT cloud access: For IoT cloud access, we can use a microcontroller or microprocessor (MCU/MPU) to implement IoT protocols (such as HTTP, WebSockets, TLS, MQTT, etc) protocol on top of a Real-Time-Operating-System (RTOS). In addition, this MCU also need to provide comprehensive security features to protect IoT device from malware attacks.

3.Device control: Depending on the applications, different IoT devices have different requirements. There is no one size fit all solution for different home appliances. For instance, a simple smart switch may only need few GPIO pins to turn on and off, while a ceiling fan may need few PWM signals to control the fan motor.  

Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) uses an Amazon-managed hardware module to connect any device to the internet and Alexa, without worrying about managing cloud services, Alexa skills, or complex networking and security firmware. With the NuMicro® M032 Host Microcontroller (HMCU), ACK customers can take advantage of NuMicro® M032’s versatile I/O peripheral interfaces for various device control functions, which can fulfill most smart home appliances’ needs.  

Taking advantage of Amazon’s Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) platform and ecosystem, Nuvoton NuMicro® M032 serial microcontroller is now ready for customers to build an Alexa compatible smart device easily and quickly without worrying about sophisticated IoT device system integration. The Nuvoton NuMicro® M032 is an Arm Cortex M0 based Host Microcontroller (HMCU) with variety of I/O interfaces including GPIOs, UART, I2C, SPI, PWM, ADC, DAC, and more. Nuvoton has finished the HMCU NuStamp-ACK module which integrated USI MT7697H ACK in a postage stamp size module with various built-in programmable peripherals. Nuvoton has also finished the ACK/HMCU bare bone integration as well as pre-integrated with Alexa “Lighting” device type. Base on this example, customers can easily integrate this add-on postage-stamp-size module into their existing home appliance product and convert it into an Alexa comparable device, such as “Oven”, “Microwave Oven”, “Fan”, “Thermostat”, “Home Security”, etc.

ACK-HMCU_02

NuStamp-ACK reference design hardware schematic and gerber files:
https://www.nuvoton.com/resource-download.jsp?tp_GUID=EV0120200701154216

Simple and Fast ACK Development Tools:

USI MT7697H Dev Kit + NuMaker-M032SE Development Board 

USI MT7697H ACK Development Kit  +   NuMaker-M032SE
USI MT7697H ACK Development Kit NuMaker-M032SE  development board for HMCU

To quick start your ACK enabled device development, you can use a NuMaker-M032SE development board for HMCU and a USI MT7697H development kit for ACK to accelerate your product development process with ACK. Customers can purchase NuMaker-M032SE development board on-line. Nuvoton has pre-integrated the ACK device SDK on the NuMicro® M032 HMCU. One common scenario is the ACK receives control message from Alexa cloud and sends it to HMCU (M032) via serial bus, such as turning on or dimming light. For a smart oven appliance, NuMicro® M032 can generate PWM signal to control the heating components and retrieve temperature information from NuMicro®M032’s embedded Analog to Digital Converter (ADC).   NuMicro® M032 can also support a wide variety of ACK’s smart home APIs for various Alexa smart appliances, such as oven, fan, lighting, thermostat, coffee maker, etc.  In addition to receiving and responding to control devices from Alexa, the NuMicro® M032 also support simple setup, the device metrics, and over-the-air update capabilities from ACK to manage your devices in the field.  To expedite the development process, developers can download ACK device SDK from Amazon Alexa Developer Blogs website https://developer.amazon.com/alexa/console/ack/resources as well NuMaker-M032SE ACK-HMCU firmware release, user menu, hardware design files, development tools, and other resources from Nuvoton website. 

 

Where to buy:
https://direct.nuvoton.com/en/numaker-m032se
https://www.digikey.com/products/en?mpart=NK-M032SE

NuMaker-M032SE ACK-HMCU firmware release:
https://github.com/OpenNuvoton/ACK-HMCU

NuMaker-M032SE evaluation board user menu:
https://www.nuvoton.com/resource-download.jsp?tp_GUID=UG0120190304151219

NuMaker-M032SE evaluation board hardware schematic and gerber files:
https://www.nuvoton.com/resource-download.jsp?tp_GUID=HL0120190304174045

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