Funnily enough, this device serves as the microcontroller and Bluetooth 5 LE portion of RAKwireless’ RAK11720 module, so we at ipXchange thought it would be useful to dive into Ambiq’s Apollo3 Blue SoC in a little more detail.
The ultra-low power consumption is certainly the most interesting thing to note about the Apollo3 Blue – in deep sleep mode with the Bluetooth off, it goes as low as 1 μA. This, in combination with a high-performance Cortex-M4 processor (clocking at up to 96 MHz), makes the Apollo3 Blue SoC an ideal centrepiece for connected, battery-operated end products in smart home, consumer/entertainment, lighting, security, wearables, and healthcare applications. Depending on how much you want to push this chip’s limits, Ambiq boasts that their ultra-low current consumption innovations enable an extended lifetime of months to years of battery life in products that currently exhibit days or months of battery life. That’s a pretty big boast!
In addition to this main portion of the chip, the Bluetooth LE 5 functionality runs on a separate core to ensure that all the required processing power is available for sensors and other peripherals that your design may require. Such peripherals include up to 50 GPIOs, a 15-channel 14-bit ADC, and an advanced stepper motor control that can be used for ultra-low power analogue watch hand movement in hybrid smart watches. Apollo3 Blue even has a PDM interface for mono and stereo audio microphones, so always-on voice-commands can certainly be implemented despite the device’s ultra-low power consumption.
This short post barely covers the large range of interfaces, and therefore possibilities, that Ambiq’s Apollo3 Blue SoC offers, so go learn more on our board page, where you can also apply to test this technology for use in a commercial application.