Silex Unwired

Video Tutorial: How to Evaluate 802.11ac plus Bluetooth SDIO Module with NXP's i.MX 6 Reference Platform

Posted by Babar Hashim on 2016-12-09 23:42:53

Not all wireless modules are created equal. So it becomes very important that one chooses a good evaluation kit to evaluate and test the radio characteristics of the module. As one of 15 Qualcomm Atheros Authorized Design Centers (ADC), Silex Technology is one of the few companies in the world that is enabled with radio source code access. This allows us to make tweaks and modifications for reliability and performance that is not available to most of our competitors. We have made included our optimized and robust QCA9377 reference driver as part of the evaluation image to allow customers experience how a "When it Absolutely Must Connect" Wi-Fi performs.

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Tags: SDIO, Embedded WiFi Radio, i.MX6, 802.11ac, NXP

Basics of Asynchronous Connection-Less (ACL) Bluetooth Communication Protocol

Posted by Tom Nakase on 2016-12-07 04:44:32

Today, I will write about basics of Bluetooth Classic specification. We will find an answer to simple question from the specification that who or what decides Bluetooth (ACL) frame type. In this article, I will refer to original bluetooth specification document  like “Vol.2 Part.B …” from the Core Spec 4.2 unless noted otherwise.


ACL Frame Type

Bluetooth Classic defines ACL (Asynchronous Connection Less) for general data frame and SCO (Synchronous Connection Oriented) for synchronous audio frame. ACL has two frame types, DM (which provides Forward Error Correction:FEC) and DH (which doesn’t provide FEC). In addition to these, the number is appended to these frame types like “DM1” or “DH3” to indicate
how many 625 usec. “slot” will be occupied. In EDR (Enhanced Data Rate) introduced with Bluetooth 2.0, DH frame got double and triple the data rate mode denoted like “2-DH1” or “3-DH5”. All these ACL frame types defined in Vol.2 Part.B 6.5.4 are summarized in Table 1. 

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Tags: Bluetooth

802.11ac SDIO Wi-Fi plus Bluetooth Module for Applications that Absolutely Must Connect

Posted by Babar Hashim on 2016-11-18 18:15:41

On Tuesday we released our latest embedded Wi-Fi module, the SX-SDMAC. The SX-SDMAC is a dual-band, single stream, 802.11a/b/g/n/ac plus Bluetooth “Smart Ready” module based on the latest Qualcomm Atheros QCA9377 System-on-Chip (SoC). It is the industry's first Wave 2 MU-MIMO IEEE 802.11ac SDIO Wi-Fi module fully certified for North America, Europe, and Japan in full production. It delivers enterprise-grade, dual-band 802.11ac Wi-Fi connectivity with link rates as high as 433Mbps.  Click here to view the full press release.

The SX-SDMAC is designed for mission-critical applications including industrial automation, healthcare, environmental monitoring, factory automation and telematics. Highly regulated industries like medical sometimes require long product life cycles. Silex can address such customer needs by offering the option to continue manufacturing our products like the SX-SDMAC for extended periods of time in our own factory.

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Tags: Wi-Fi, SDIO, Embedded Wireless, Embedded WiFi Module, 802.11ac, Bluetooth

Silex Releases Version 1.5.4 of the SX-ULPGN UART AT Command Set

Posted by Safi Khan on 2016-10-31 23:19:15

The SX-ULPGN is an ultra-low-power hostless Wi-Fi IoT module with 802.11 b/g/n support. This low power Wi-Fi IoT module is based on QCA4010 System-on-Chip (SoC) from Qualcomm. Our close relationship with Qualcomm and other partners enables us to provide support for our modules that is not available elsewhere.

The SX-ULPGN also supports a hosted mode for external MCUs with the Silex UART AT Command Set for a cost-effective serial-to-Wi-Fi connectivity addition to already designed IoT solutions with host MCUs.

Based on positive feedback and requests for additional features from our customers, we have now released an update to the UART AT Command Set (Version 1.5.4). This new version adds commonly used networking features like HTTP client and access to peripherals like ADC, PWM, and GPIOs of the SX-ULPGN and make them available to the external Host.

Some of the key features of the Silex AT Command Set are highlighted below:

  • No Host Driver Required for Rapid Customer Enablement
  • Expands SX-ULPGN's Market Reach into Cost-Effective Hosted MCU Based IoT Solutions
  • Comprehensive & Flexible (Runs over Debug UART or over any of the two High Speed UARTs up to 3Mbps)
  • Based on Hayes AT Serial Modem Command Syntax
  • IPv4, IPv6, & Configuration Save/Load
  • HTTP Client & BASIC Authentication
  • SSL Certificate Management
  • DNS Client
  • Commands to Operate GPIOs, ADCs, & PWMs
  • Firmware Update Over-the-Air & UART (XMODEM)
  • AP Mode
  • DHCP Server
  • Suspend/Resume
  • 67 Commands
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How Qualcomm Acquiring NXP Will Benefit You!

Posted by Keith Sugawara on 2016-10-31 18:37:51

On October 27, 2016, Qualcomm Incorporated (NASDAQ: QCOM) and NXP Semiconductors N.V. (NASDAQ: NXPI) announced a definitive agreement, unanimously approved by the boards of directors of both companies, under which Qualcomm will acquire NXP. 

The combining of NXP into Qualcomm is based on compelling strategic logic that brings together two highly successful and complementary businesses to create a premier semiconductor industry leader. With unique leadership positions in Wireless technologies, Security and Processing, the union is ideally positioned to address the emerging trends of ADAS and Autonomous Vehicles, the Internet of Things (IoT) and the 5G revolution.

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Tags: Qualcomm, NXP

SX-Virtual Link Software is Now WHQL Certified

Posted by Babar Hashim on 2016-10-01 05:38:26

SX Virtual Link is SIlex's propriety utility that allows users to discover and connect to USB devices connected to Silex USB Device Servers.The way it works is that the software emulates a USB connection on the computer, and makes the USB device (such as a printer or a disk drive) connected to the SX Virtual Link enabled device look as if it were directly connected. This makes it easy to connect and share USB devices on the network.

To help system integrators, device manufacturers and end user Windows programmers to add Silex SX Virtual Link functionality into Windows applications Silex offers  the SX-Virtual Link SDK to developers for no charge. 

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Tags: WHQL, Windows

Silex Adds Dual Band Functionality to its 802.11ac PCIe Card

Posted by Babar Hashim on 2016-10-01 03:51:08

Silex has recently added dual band functionality to its 802.11ac PCIe Wi-Fi card. The SX-PCEAC-DB is now an 802.11ac compliant dual-band 3x3 PCIe Mini Card. It is based on the Qualcomm Atheros QCA9880 chipset, designed to deliver wireless data rates of up to 1.3Gbps. It targets home and enterprise wireless access points, offering reliable wireless performance for a variety of bandwidth-intensive video-over-wireless applications.

SX-PCEAC-DB card gives customers the ability to easily and reliably support applications where this extra bandwidth and performance is required, like deploying HD video over Wi-Fi. Applications include commercial AP, routers, gateways, large-size printers, video devices, medical devices etc.

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Tags: Embedded WiFi Module, Embedded WiFi Radio, 802.11ac

NX-1 WLAN Enterprise Network Analyzer Enables Remote PC-less Network Management Reducing Cost and Field Time

Posted by Safi Khan on 2016-09-29 05:48:25

NX-1 is a wireless LAN enterprise network analyzer. The NX-1 provides an easy to understand simple menu even for those unfamiliar with specialized WLAN knowledge to analyze, sniff, and troubleshoot WLAN networks. Remote monitoring and PC-less operation are key differentiating NX-1 features eliminating technician, PC, and expensive analysis software on-site, reducing cost & field time.

Silex believes in “When it Absolutely Must Connect” as the guiding business principle. At the core of our vision is the dream of realizing a reliable always-on network. To achieve this vision, we have developed the NX-1 for our customers – OEMs and service providers. The NX-1 helps them manage their WLAN networks using four powerful built-in functions:

  • Environment Survey
  • Spectrum Analyzer
  • Network Observation
  • Protocol Sniffer / Frame Capture
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Tags: Wireless LAN Network Analyzers

Making the Best Wi-Fi Technology Even Better

Posted by Keith Sugawara on 2016-08-30 20:01:11

Today, most wireless modules are based on a radio vendor’s recommended reference design. However, the functionality and quality of the modules using a standard reference design is often limited. At Silex Technology, we understand that while typical consumer-oriented Wi-Fi technologies are driven by low-cost product development, short time-to-market, and rapid product improvements, this is not the case for mission-critical Wi-Fi applications. Silex Technology customers need Wi-Fi products that are designed for, and can function reliably, for long periods of time.

To ensure we bring the most reliable and durable Wi-Fi products to market, we invest heavily in making the best off-the-shelf chips available even better. With relentless attention to quality, exclusive access to Qualcomm Atheros silicon, and our expertise, Silex Technology is the trusted leader in reliable Wi-Fi connectivity.

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Tags: Embedded Wireless

Hosted or Hostless IoT Wi-Fi Devices? The Decision is Critical

Posted by Safi Khan on 2016-08-08 18:16:31

The Internet of Things (IoT) is a quickly growing market segment, and IoT applications often require smaller size, lower cost, andlower power consumption to address many small-but-constant battery operated applications such as home automation controls, sensors, and medical devices. As a result, these devices offer a unique variety of connectivity options beyond what were available to once-typical wireless devices. One of these options involves choosing to create either a hosted or a hostless IoT Wi-Fi device.

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Tags: Embedded Wireless