Nordic Semiconductor demonstrates integrated short-range, Wi-Fi and cellular wireless communication innovations at Computex 2024

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The savvy smart location tags, asset trackers, connected health sensing devices, smart home appliances, advanced vehicles, and smart electric vehicle systems show that the popularity of Internet of Things (IoT) devices has penetrated nearly every aspect of our lives. The wireless communication technologies, coupled with powerful cloud computing and Artificial Intelligence (AI) technologies, play a significant role in driving technological advancement.

Nordic Semiconductor, a leading global provider of wireless IoT solutions, provides an exclusive product and technology showcase during Computex Taipei 2024. Strongly demonstrating the Nordic's product series with short-range, medium, and long-distance wireless communication technologies, helps customers to develop modern devices and notable applications while continuously improving by delivering low-power multi-protocol wireless technologies.

In this interview with Mr. Richard Chen, regional sales manager of Nordic Semiconductor, he indicates that product development engineering teams are consistently struggling to implement the well-balanced features between connectivity, security, power saving, and other fancy functions while consumers' endless demand for intelligent, sophisticated and instant-response IoT devices. These difficult trade-offs are achieving longer battery life and lower energy consumption in devices.

To help customers solve these tough problems, Nordic displays a series of wireless communication products and application demonstrations at the Taipei W Hotel in Xinyi District between June 4 to 7 2024. It covers several important product highlights below in this article. There are key product information and major demos on the following web pages of for further reference.

Short-ranged smart home applications for Matter and Bluetooth LE Audio + Auracast features

Nordic is set to showcase a range of smart applications based on Matter standard and Bluetooth wireless technology. The demos are highlighting Matter-over-Thread / Matter-over-Wi-Fi use cases. The booth shows an integration of Nordic's development kits and devices including models of nRF54H20 DK, nRF54L15 DK, and nRF7002 EK.

Developed by Connectivity Standards Alliance (CSA), Matter is a smart-home connectivity standard that ensures connected devices interoperate reliably. Industry leaders such as Apple, Amazon, and Google have promoted Matter standards and are supported by their IoT eco-systems.

The recent released Matter 1.3 standard on May 8, 2024 brings support for more appliances like kitchen robotics.

More supported devices across ecosystems require bigger software to handle it. One of the strengthening features of Nordic solutions is the enlarged Flash memory size to satisfy customers to accommodate big software stacks and update firmware easily through Over-The-Air technology.

Another advantage of Nordic solution is the cyber security features like nRF9160 low power system-in-package (SiP) and nRF5340 system-on-chip (SoC) achieved Platform Security Architecture (PSA) Certified Level 2. The latest models such as nRF54H20and nRF54L15 SoC have passed PSA Certified Level 3. These certifications provide Nordic customers with an assurance offering a secure platform to build IoT products ensuring that all devices on the network are communicating securely and privately.

Meanwhile, the demos of Nordic's Bluetooth Low Energy flagship SoCs are another spotlighting focus. Nordic's award-winning Bluetooth LE series solutions will be displayed at the booth based on the nRF5340 Audio DK development kit delivering both low-energy and high-quality wireless audio as well as the broadcasting capabilities of Bluetooth LE Audio with Auracast.

Bluetooth LE Audio is the next generation of wireless audio streaming technology. The stand will also play host to a Bluetooth LE Audio and Auracast demonstration.

Bluetooth LE Audio pursues advanced sound quality with lower power consumption and reduces the delay between audio and visual experience to improve the immersive experience. Moreover, Auracast technology uses broadcast technology to share audio streaming services with multiple people.

In addition to hearing aid applications, Auracast is also aiming at some interesting use scenarios such as museums and art exhibitions navigation services to open up unlimited possibilities for broadcast applications in the future.

Low-powered Wi-Fi 6 and Cellular wireless communication applications

Nordic builds the mid-range product portfolio by introducing low-powered Wi-Fi 6 technology to explore new applications for high-speed data communication in the edge nodes. Taking edge computing use cases as an example, Chen described, the IoT sensors transfer sensing information wirelessly on the edge side to cloud servers for connecting Nordic's Thingy:53 IoT machine learning platform for training a model in the cloud. The model can then be deployed straight back onto the SoC on the edge side for deployment and inferencing. The entire process is quick and requires no coding knowledge.

There are further examples in the real world. For example, the sensing audio data or abnormal vibrations of industrial fans or motors in the factory can be captured for AI training in the cloud. After downloading the AI models to the edge SoC, the systems will have the prediction features to identify and predict the motor systems' possible failures and malfunctions to ensure that the right motor maintenance strategy is implemented at the right time.

Talking about long distance wireless applications, Nordic focuses on cellular LPWAN technologies to connect devices through 4G/LTE, and 5G communication standards. The product series are ranging from nRF91 SiP product lines to newly released low-power cellular SoC chips to support LTE-M and NB-IoT protocol.

The product combination provides major benefits of low power consumption, cost-effectiveness, and size reduction due to the integrated multi-protocol cellular modem and transceiver. Giving battery-driven devices better prospects, Nordic cellular LPWAN solutions represent a leap forward in connecting remote meter-reading networks for water, gas, and electricity.

In the Nordic suite, the guests will witness the convergence of GNSS, Cell-based, and SSID-based Wi-Fi locationing in the demo stations. Using the nRF Cloud Location Services alongside DECT NR+ nodes, this showcase demonstrates asset tracking with precision and accuracy. Running predictive maintenance ML models by Edge Impulse's ML software, there is a further demonstration station to show Thingy:53 IoT machine learning prototyping platform to allow guests to examine and feel the prediction functions.

In the demos of Human Interface Devices, Nordic uses Bluetooth LE gaming mouse device to emulate high-speed automatic packet transmission to a gaming PC. This gaming mouse delivers up to 8,000 data reports per second, ensuring high speed and minimal delay in intense and fast-paced gaming scenarios. This improved user experience that hasn't been seen before.

As a pioneer of Bluetooth LE technology, Nordic has evolved into a full-spectrum wireless IoT company offering a range of solutions based on leading industry standards including LTE-M, NB-IoT, DECT NR+, Wi-Fi 6, Matter, and Thread, says Chen. Nordic's diversified offering at Computex 2024 is showing greater market expansion not only to maintain a significant market share in Bluetooth Low Energy but also to expand their cellular IoT offerings. Nordic hopes to work with Taiwan's electronics supply chains and ecosystem partners to embrace IoT business opportunities to spur growth in increasingly fast-paced markets.

Capable of supporting Bluetooth 5.4 and future Bluetooth specifications, plus LE Audio, Bluetooth mesh, Thread, Matter, and more, the nRF54H20 will be

Capable of supporting Bluetooth 5.4 and future Bluetooth specifications, plus LE Audio, Bluetooth mesh, Thread, Matter, and more, the nRF54H20 will be the foundation for a new wave of revolutionary IoT end-products. Its combination of advanced features will enable complex end-products that have previously been unfeasible

CIoT shows Nordic's goal to streamline cellular product development and support the entire product lifecycle

CIoT shows Nordic's goal to streamline cellular product development and support the entire product lifecycle. This is why we have integrated all the different parts of our cellular offering into a complete solution – a fully Nordic-owned and controlled offering that includes hardware, software, tools, cloud services and our world-class support

Nordic is actively involved and one of the main contributors the development of Matter

Nordic is actively involved and one of the main contributors the development of Matter. Matter aims to make it easy for developers to create a secure and reliable solution. If you want your products to be interoperable with the major smart home ecosystems, Matter is the way to go