Two categories that I get excited about are Bluetooth and audio. When you combine the two in a development kit, well, it doesn’t get much better than that. Microchip recently released such a kit with the goal of simplifying design for Bluetooth-enabled smartphone docks and speakers.
Designed around the company’s 32-bit family of MCUs, the PIC32 Bluetooth Audio Development Kit conforms to the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP). The goal of the profile is to enable wireless stereo audio. Hence, consumers can use their phones as music sources or as remote controls to select music files.
The kit includes audio streaming demo code. It delivers up to 24-bit, 192-kHz audio. Microchip claims that it’s been tested with more than 100 different Bluetooth audio-enabled devices, spanning 18 different manufacturers. The Bluetooth hardware module and A2DP audio software are already Bluetooth.org certified, which saves time and development cost.
The modular design lets developers swap out the included daughter boards (one for audio and one for Bluetooth), to create their own custom versions with their preferred audio and wireless solutions. The kit also supports USB Host and Device connectivity, Apple device authentication module interface, a 2-inch color LCD, five general-purpose button switches, and five LEDs.
"Two categories that I get excited about are Bluetooth and audio. When you combine the two in a development kit, well, it doesn't get much better than that. Microchip recently released such a kit with the goal of simplifying design for Bluetooth-enabled smartphone docks and speakers."
Richard, now also Bluetooth devices are using for both transferring and playing the audio devices as a part of car entertainment kits. I would like to know how the new technology works and how it's superior to the existing one.
The new kit brings all of the ingredients together. There is nothing that compares to it in the market. The PIC32 on board houses the complete Bluetooth A2DP stack with AVRCP (for song info etc.) and the SBC CODEC (optional AAC support is available from Microchip), connects to the Bluetooth Module over the UART HCI standard interface, and drives a nice color display. The platform with preloaded SW can connect into your "Audio Aux In" in the car and can be connected to your smartphone to stream audio over Bluetooth. It also includes USB capability and optional Apple authentication support, which makes it a nice audio dock development platform. If you want to change the connectivity or the CODEC you can build up your own daughter board and plug it in. I have not seen a more complete kit in the market.
I can still recall when the first Bluetooth headsets came out. There was literally no end to the number of execs who couldn't get the things off their heads. Today, the combination has a wide range of applications in different fields and is a blessing indeed.
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