Category: Speakers

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NXP i.MX RT106A Arm Cortex-M7 MCU for Alexa

Posted by Charbax – October 28, 2019

Turnkey, low cost i.MX RT solution speeds time to market. Cloud-based voice assistants, led by Amazon’s Alexa, have become common in many homes, embedded in smart speakers like Amazon’s Echo products. Soon, the newly emerging trend to build voice assistants directly into smart devices such as light switches, ceiling fans, appliances, smoke detectors, and thermostats, will make voice control ubiquitous throughout the home. Voice assistants conveniently and unobtrusively located throughout the home enable a family’s entire network of connected smart devices to be controlled by voice commands from any room. For example, “Alexa, turn off all the lights,” or even more powerful routines can be created such as, “Alexa, good morning,” which can turn on music, start the coffee pot, adjust the thermostat settings, and more.

Today, a few smart home device and appliance makers are introducing versions of their products with built-in voice assistants. Until now, the technology required to embed cloud voice assistants has required a powerful multicore microprocessor unit (MPU), similar to the application processor in smart phones, with large Flash and SDRAM memories, and complex power management. Such implementations have not been a fit for cost sensitive consumer devices, which has impeded the proliferation of smart home devices with built-in voice.

At Embedded World this week, NXP Semiconductors announced the first MCU based implementation of an Alexa client, based on a new member of NXP’s popular i.MX RT crossover processor family of devices. This new solution enables device makers to build Alexa into products using a low cost, low power microcontroller unit (MCU), a device that is typically already required in any connected smart home product, meaning that OEMs can now add voice to their products at very low incremental cost (not much more than the cost of the microphones). Running on Amazon FreeRTOS, NXP’s new MCU-based AVS solution leverages the power of AWS IoT Core to minimize the processing resources needed to build Alexa into a product. Compared to previous implementations running Linux with large memory footprints, requiring more than 50 MB RAM and several Giga-Bytes of Flash, NXP’s MCU solution needs less than 1 MB of on-chip RAM and fewer than 16 MB of Flash, significantly reducing cost and size.

The i.MX RT106A (“ten-sixty-a”), has a 600 MHz Arm™ Cortex-M7™ processor, 1 MB of on chip SRAM, an LCD display, camera interface, advanced security and flexible communication, combined with a complete turnkey AVS software solution and a production ready hardware design, to enable OEMs to quickly and easily add Alexa to their product designs.

With this solution, device makers realize further benefits of shorter time to market, lower development and lifetime costs. It brings together the Alexa Voice Service, AWS IoT Core, and Amazon FreeRTOS to provide complete and best-in-class security, deployment, and device monitoring.

NXP’s i.MX RT MCU-based AVS solution is available as a complete kit for evaluation, development and prototyping. The hardware consists of two small, 30 mm x 40 mm (1.2” x 1.6”) boards. The MCU system on module (SoM) carries the i.MX RT106A processor, 32 MB of HyperFlash memory, a Wi-Fi/Bluetooth module and an optional NXP A71CH secure element. The audio board has three MEMS microphones and connects to a speaker driven by NXP’s TFA9894D smart audio amplifier. The hardware ships with software that includes everything necessary for a developer to, out-of-the-box, connect to the Alexa Voice Service and immediately start prototyping. This one-stop-shop software package includes far-field voice processing (echo cancellation, noise suppression, beam forming, barge-in), an Alexa wake word inference engine, an AVS client application, API and all necessary drivers.

Samples of the i.MX RT106A processor and the SLN-ALEXA-IOT solution kit are available to qualified early access customers now.

€299 Archos Diamond bezel-less, Archos Oxygen, Smart Speakers, Smart Lights and 101S Oxygen Tablet

Posted by Charbax – March 7, 2019

Archos Diamond has a 6.39" HD+ 2160x1080 AMOLED display, powered by the MediaTek Helio P70 ARM Cortex-A73/A53 octa-core CPU with an ARM Mali-G72 GPU. Archos Oxygen 68 at 149eur, 63 at 129eur, 57 at 99eur. Archos also shows their Amazon Alexa smart speakers, the 19.90eur Archos Smart LED Lights that work with Google Assistant and Amazon Alexa. Archos 101S Oxygen Tablet based on MediaTek X20 deca-core with 3GB RAM and 32GB Flash, comes with a special charging and speaker dock.

Baidu DuerOS voice assistant at Linaro Connect

Posted by Charbax – September 8, 2018

DuerOS is Baidu's voice assistant. Since Baidu can leverage its expansive data set, its voice assistant called DuerOS has accumulated more conversation-based skill sets than Alexa, Siri or Cortana.

BOE Flexible Phone, 8K, 5644PPI micro-display (17x Retina), Printed OLED, QLED and more

Posted by Charbax – June 2, 2018

BOE presents their latest flexible AMOLED display solutions for the future of smartphones that can be bent, folded, and rolled and even flap in the wind. BOE's flexible displays is demonstrated for robots with touch control, smart loudspeakers, an S-shaped in-car flexible AMOLED display. 8K displays, micro displays, QLED displays and other IoT solutions such as their TFT based AMOLED fingerprint recognition system that works in any spot of the display area

The foldable all-screen WQHD AMOLED display launched by BOE can achieve minimum dynamic bending with a radius of only 1mm. It can be bent more than 100,000 times and has an NTSC color gamut up to 118%. BOE is exhibiting a 5.99" FHD+ 2160x1080 Flexible AMOLED foldable mobile phone and a 7.56" foldable tablet. The display can be used for mobile phones when it is folded up and for tablets or monitors when it unfolds.

As one of the upcoming possibly revolutionizing OLED technical directions, BOE demonstrates their OLED printing technology to possibly just print the future of Smartphone displays showing their 5.5" FHD (1920×1080) printing flexible OLED display.

UHD has become a keyword of SID 2018 for material and equipment suppliers and device manufacturers, signaling the advent of the 8K era. In addition to the 110-inch 8K, 75-inch 8K, and 65-inch 8K glasses-free 3D displays, BOE also presents 13.3-inch 8K display products, promoting the development of small and medium-sized 8K products.

BOE has gathered speed in building an 8K ecosystem ever since it launched the "8425 strategy" which means "promoting 8K, popularizing 4K, replacing 2K and making good use of 5G". BOE has recently launched the 8K solution that incorporates BOE's 4K/8K image service cloud, 8K decoder player, and 8K display device, making it possible to shoot, edit, transmit and broadcast 8K content. This helps to solve problems like the costliness and massive size of traditional decoder players, as well as the lack of 8K content, thus promoting the faster popularization of 8K.

Among several micro displays at BOE's booth is a silicon-based OLED AR product which features monocrystalline silicon as the active drive backplane as well as high resolution, high level of integration, low power consumption, small size, and light weight. The AR product is backed by a 0.39-inch silicon-based OLED which has the world's leading pixel density of 5644PPI, 17 times that of a Retina display, and a contrast ratio over 10000:1, which enables the overlapping and interaction between virtual 3D images and real scenes. All these secure an ultimate experience for users as well as bright prospect in the field of education and training, video games, home decoration, etc.

Moreover, BOE shows its cutting-edge technologies and products such as QLED, mini-LED displays, a number of new applications and products including curved in-car display instruments and BOE iGallery.

Actions S900 in Cubiedboard9 dev board, ATB1103/ATB1109 ARM Cortex-M0

Posted by Charbax – April 20, 2018

Actions S900 is a Quad-core ARM Cortex-A53, the Actions S500 is a Quad-core Cortex-A9. Actions also shows some other products for video smart speaker, smart door bell, smart kids robots, Actions also provides their MIPS based chipset for Bluetooth speakers, here also they are launching their new ATB1103/ATB1109 ARM Cortex-M0 system for their upcoming Bluetooth and perhaps also low cost smart speakers platform.

Allwinner R18, R16, R6 for Amazon Alexa and other smart speaker systems, B288 for E Ink e-reader

Posted by Charbax – April 19, 2018

Allwinner Smart Home solutions including their chipsets and development kit for the R18 which I also filmed here the $26 (169rmb) Allwinner R16 powered Xiao' ai Classmate Smart Speaker Mini by Xiaomi to be delivered in over 5 million units quantity, smart speakers by DIngDong. The Allwinner R6 enables even lower priced smart speakers with a maximum of 2 microphone in the microphone array for devices that will be closer to the user. The Allwinner B288 enables E Ink e-reader supported by DongDong which is China's leading online book store. The Allwinner MR100 powers the fully open source drone project by Kudrone. The Xiaomi Drone uses the Allwinner R16 too. The Allwinner FC1600 powers the Niutingting Early Learning Machine by Benew which reads stories for kids for 2-6 years old. Allwinner T3 for car dashboard and smart mirror, T8 for in-car entertainment. The Xiaomi Robot Vaccum Cleaner uses the Allwinner R16 and uses lasers to calculate distance to walls and navigate to vaccum and mop the floor.

Rockchip RK3229 Smart Speakers Solution runs Android Things with Google Assistant

Posted by Charbax – February 25, 2018

Rockchip has optimized their RK3229 and RK3036 Quad-core ARM Cortex-A7 System on Module solution to run Android Things or another optimized Linux OS to be able to support Google Assistant, Alexa, iflyertek, DuerOS for high-end to low cost smart speaker products and intelligent voice interactive products, supports sound source localization, sound field enhancement, echo cancellation and noise suppression technology. This Rockchip RK3229 Solution supports 8 channel digital silicon microphones directly connected chip solution, and thus achieves an overall solution of cost-effectiveness and high expandability for the Smart Speakers market.

eARC with HDMI 2.1, Enhanced Audio Return Channel at up to 40mbit/s

Posted by Charbax – February 10, 2018

eARC in HDMI 2.1 simplifies connectivity and supports the most advanced audio formats such as object-based audio, such as Dolby Atmos and DTS:X, highest audio quality, and ensures compatibility between audio devices and upcoming HDMI 2.1 products, enabling to deliver those formats via an eARC-enabled HDMI port on a future HDMI 2.1 TV. eARC also provides support for the TV’s over-the-air tuner, streaming apps received by the TV, and audio from HDMI sources connected to the TV.

A key advantage of eARC is that it enables a TV-centric living room or home theater configuration that can provide a more seamless experience. Today, an AV receiver—or a similar repeater device—is necessary to extract high quality audio from an HDMI link, while the video is processed and passed through to the TV. The user may have to switch inputs on both the TV and an audio device to find the source of their content, and content sourced within the TV and from TV inputs is frequently limited to stereo or, in the best case, one of a very small number of compressed formats.

With eARC, it will be possible to connect all sources through the TV and send audio to the sound system completely uncompromised. Furthermore, eARC will make possible a new breed of audio-only receivers that will yield greater value and ease-of-use by eliminating a video subsystem. So, in theory anyway, overall video and audio performance will improve with eARC.

Allwinner Alexa Solution Dev Kit for cheaper Voice ARM devices

Posted by Charbax – January 19, 2018

Allwinner launches their ARM SoC-Only 3-Mic Far-Field Dev Kit for Amazon Voice Service (AVS) with all the acoustic and distance challenged voice processing done fully on the Allwinner R18 Quad-core 64bit ARM Cortex-A53 SoC eliminating the need for a more expensive and more complicated digital signal processor (DSP) to do Alexa Voice Services, reducing complexity and expenses, increasing flexibility for OEMs, ODMs, IDH partners, Allwinner currently supports Amazon AVS with their R18 dev kit running their Allwinner Linux based optimized embedded Tina OS platform, with support for Android Things probably also to come later. Allwinner not only provides the R18 "open source family" SoC, they also provide Wi-Fi, analog-to-digital converters (ADC), PMIC, algorithms (via partner GMEMS) for a Total package for the device developer.

Industry insiders and project creators can contact Allwinner at service@allwinnertech.com and at: http://www.allwinnertech.com/index.php?c=market&a=index&id=59

LaMetric Air real-time Smart Dashboard Clock

Posted by Charbax – September 11, 2017

Nazar Bilous, CEO and Founder of http://lametric.com presents their prototype for their next generation LaMetric smart clock/dashboard, their current version is a very nice looking Smart Clock, notification dashboard with a very readable and colorful LED display, hackable with APIs, IFFT behaviors, to receive and to act on notifications, tasks, workout timers, business metrics, emails, news and more. You can have your LaMetric clock always on in the back of your room and it can activate, make a sound, each time for example that your YouTube channel gets a new subscriber, each time that you pass a certain YouTube views amount, each time Donald Trump tweets, or any other notification that you would like to be always aware of in your home or in your office.