Nordic Semiconductor announced its entry into the Wi-Fi® wireless IoT market with the introduction of the nRF7002, an ultra-low power, dual-band Wi-Fi 6 companion IC. The launch makes Nordic Semiconductor one of the few companies in the world to offer all three of the world’s most popular wireless IoT technologies: Bluetooth®, Wi-Fi, and cellular IoT.
The nRF7002 is described as a ‘companion IC’ which means it is designed to provide seamless Wi-Fi connectivity and Wi-Fi-based location (SSID sniffing of local Wi-Fi hubs) when used alongside Nordic’s existing products. These include the nRF52® and nRF53® Series multiprotocol Systems-on-Chip (SoCs), and nRF91® Series cellular IoT Systems-in-Package (SiPs). The nRF7002 can also be used in conjunction with non-Nordic host devices.
The launch of the nRF7002 follows Nordic’s 2020 acquisition of the development team, core Wi-Fi expertise, and Wi-Fi IP tech assets of Imagination Technologies Group. With the nRF7002, Nordic Semiconductor brings decades of ultra-low-power wireless IoT and silicon design expertise to Wi-Fi 6, a standard which features efficiency gains that support long-life, battery-powered wireless IoT operation.
Wi-Fi forms an integral part of the smart home Matter protocol championed by Apple, Amazon, Google, Samsung, and hundreds of other companies in consumer IoT. By adding Wi-Fi to its product range Nordic will now support all three wireless protocols used in Matter. Namely: Bluetooth LE for commissioning, Thread for low power mesh networking, and Wi-Fi for high-speed wireless applications.
“We were able to bring our first Wi-Fi IC to market very quickly as a result of acquiring an extremely capable Wi-Fi team alongside a portfolio of Wi-Fi assets that team had already developed,” says Nordic CTO/EVP of R&D and Strategy, Svein-Egil Nielsen. “Nordic has also ensured that developing Nordic-based Wi-Fi 6 applications will be as simple as developing any other Nordic wireless IoT application, including using the same development tools and nRF Connect SDK.”
“The new Wi-Fi team’s relentless hard work to enable Nordic to launch its first Wi-Fi product so soon deserves huge recognition,” continues Mike Davis, Nordic’s ?Wi-Fi Systems & Software Director. “They knew Wi-Fi was the number one missing capability requested by Nordic customers. And they knew Nordic’s customers needed this capability quickly.”
“I am extremely happy that we are finally able to add Wi-Fi to our wireless IoT product portfolio,” adds Kjetil Holstad, Nordic’s EVP Product Management. “Our sales force is eager to engage with customers worldwide. The nRF7002 is a great starting point and we are already well ahead in terms of building a portfolio of unique Wi-Fi products that will combine seamlessly with Nordic’s existing ultra-low power wireless technologies.”
The nRF7002 is supplied in a 6 x 6mm QFN package and is sampling now. Interested customers are advised to contact their local Nordic distributor.
Wi-Fi and the Nordic nRF7002 will form a key part of the upcoming Nordic Tech Tour. Spanning 48 cities in North America and EMEA, the event will provide an inside view of Nordic’s latest innovations across Bluetooth LE, cellular IoT, and Wi-Fi.
Click here for more details on the nRF7002 Wi-Fi 6 IC.