Flash MCUs foster ZigBee RF4CE-based remote development.

Press Release Summary:

Intended for RF remote control applications, µPD78F8056/7/8 are 16-bit All Flash(TM) MCUs featuring embedded IEEE802.15.4-compliant 2.4 GHz RF transceiver for ZigBee® RF4CE. Flash memory capacities of 64, 96, and 128 KB are available, and functionality allows applications to program and erase flash EEPROM at 1.8 V. Equipped with built-in voltage booster, MCUs come with 56 pins and 8 x 8 mm QFN packages. Current consumption is 18 mA during reception and 19 mA during transmission.

Original Press Release:

NEC Electronics Introduces 3 New 16-bit All FlashTM Microcontrollers with Embedded IEEE 802.15.4 Radio Transceiver for ZigBee® RF4CE

Enables RF Connectivity with the Lowest Level of Power Consumption in the Industry


NEC Electronics (TSE: 6723) today introduced its three new 16-bit All FlashTM microcontrollers (MCUs) with embedded IEEE802.15.4-compliant 2.4 gigahertz (GHz) radio frequency (RF) transceiver for ZigBee® RF4CE, an industry standard for remote control in consumer electronics. The new MCUs are ideal for RF remote control and provide the lowest level of power consumption in the industry. The three new MCUs come with 56 pins and 8x8mm quad flat no-leads (QFN) packages, and part numbers differ according to their flash memory capacity: the µPD78F8056 offers 64 kilobytes (KB) of flash memory, the µPD78F8057 has 96 KB, and the µPD78F8058 has 128 KB.

To support development tasks of the ZigBee RF4CE applications, NEC Electronics also provides a ZigBee RF4CE software development kit (SDK), which includes a ZigBee RF4CE stack library and a three-channel real-time sniffer, capable of simultaneously monitoring packets from the three RF4CE frequency channels, as well as an evaluation board with NEC Electronics' µPD78F8058 MCU.

To align with advanced digital TVs, set-top boxes (STBs), Blu-rayTM disc devices and other audio-visual (AV) home entertainment devices, radio frequency remote controls alleviates several shortcomings of infra-red remote controls, such as unidirectional communication and line-of-sight limitations. The two-way communication in RF4CE remote controls enables advanced home entertainment systems to support sophisticated features. By eliminating line-of-sight problems, AV systems can form networks of their own for command-and-control purpose, thereby enhancing the user's experience. Security features of the RF4CE standard authenticate legitimate devices and protect data exchanges within its network.

NEC Electronics began providing ZigBee-based solutions in 2004. To meet market expectations for RF remote control based on ZigBee RF4CE specifications, NEC Electronics developed these ultra-low-power MCUs integrated with a low-power IEEE802.15.4-compliant radio transceiver in one package. In addition to the RF4CE application, these MCUs also can be used for 802.14.5 wireless networking.

The primary features of the new MCUs are as follows:

  • (1)Lowest level of power consumption in the industry
    The new MCUs combine NEC Electronics' ultra-low-power 78K0R/Kx3-L 16-bit CPU and the ultra-low-power IEEE802.15.4 compliant 2.4 GHz RF transceiver with hardware MAC functions, realizing the lowest level of power consumption in the industry. These three offer current consumption of 18 milliamps (mA) during reception and 19 mA during transmission.
  • (2)Flash EEPROM programmable and erasable at 1.8V
    With a built-in voltage booster, NEC Electronics' new MCUs with radio connectivity allow applications to program and erase flash EEPROM at 1.8 V, offering longer lifetime with two dry batteries while counting frames and storing the non-volatile count values, which are key elements for security.
  • (3)Development support
    NEC Electronics' ZigBee RF4CE SDK includes a ZigBee RF4CE library, automatic transmission (AT) commands and its interpreter, and a three-channel real-time sniffer that can simultaneously observe packets in the three RF4CE frequency channels. An evaluation kit, which is comprised of an RF module board with an NEC Electronics µPD78F8058 MCU and a flash programming and debugging board, is also available for evaluation and prototyping.

    NEC Electronics believes these new MCUs will contribute to the evolution of the next-generation remote-control functionality in consumer electronics.

    Exhibition at Embedded Technology 2009
    NEC Electronics' three new MCUs will be showcased in the company's booth at the Embedded Technology 2009 (ET 2009), to be held in Yokohama, Japan from November 18 to 21.

    Pricing and Availability
    Samples of the new chips are currently available and pricing varies depending on memory capacity. For example, the unit price of the µPD78F8058 MCU with 128 KB of flash memory and 8 KB of RAM is priced at US$5 each. Mass production is scheduled to begin in the first half of 2010, and is expected to reach a monthly production of 1,200,000 units by 2011. A ZigBee RF4CE SDK and evaluation kit are also available now. More information about NEC Electronics' extensive MCU product offerings can be found at here
    (Pricing and availability are subject to change without notice.)

    Please refer to the attachment for the main specifications of NEC Electronics' new MCUs.

    About ZigBee
    ZigBee: Control your world
    ZigBee is the global wireless language connecting dramatically different devices to work together and enhance everyday life. The ZigBee Alliance is a non-profit association of more than 300 member companies driving development of ZigBee wireless technology. The Alliance promotes worldwide adoption of ZigBee as the leading wirelessly networked, sensing and control standard for use in consumer electronic, energy, home, commercial and industrial areas.

    For more information, visit: www.ZigBee.org.

    About ZigBee RF4CE
    ZigBee RF4CE: More flexibility and control
    The ZigBee RF4CE specification is based on IEEE 802.15.4. MAC/PHY radio technology in the 2.4GHz unlicensed frequency band and enables worldwide operation, low power consumption and instantaneous response time. It allows omni-directional and reliable two-way wireless communication, channel agility for enhanced co-existence with other 2.4GHz wireless technologies, simple secure set-up and configuration. For more details, visit http://www.zigbee.org/rf4ce.

    About NEC Electronics
    NEC Electronics Corporation (TSE: 6723) specializes in semiconductor products encompassing advanced technology solutions for the high-end computing and broadband networking markets; system solutions for the mobile handset, PC peripheral, automotive and digital consumer markets; and multi-market solutions for a wide range of customer applications. NEC Electronics Corporation has subsidiaries worldwide including NEC Electronics America, Inc. and NEC Electronics (Europe) GmbH. More information about NEC Electronics worldwide can be found at www.necel.com.

    All Flash is a trademark of NEC Electronics Corporation in Japan and other countries. SuperFlash memory technology used in NEC Electronics' 32-bit devices is licensed from Silicon Storage Technology Inc. SuperFlash is a registered trademark of Silicon Storage Technology in the U.S., Japan, and other countries. ZigBee is a registered trademark of the ZigBee Alliance. Blu-ray is a trademark of Blu-ray Disc Association. All other registered trademarks or trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

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