Fostering the development of smart home solutions, Microchip announced that its fully-certified Wi-Fi SDK with support for Apple’s ‘Homekit’ home automation platform is now available. The SDK, claims the firm, allows a dramatic reduction in execution time for HomeKit commands like automated door lock which results in a fast user experience. It also offers security features that are crucial for development of smart home solutions such as thermostats, lights and smart plugs.
This SDK helps MFi licensees to create fast, low-power designs on the industry’s first hardware cryptography enabled Wi-Fi-based development kit for HomeKit, stated Microchip.
The Wi-Fi SDK features the CEC1702, an ARM Cortex-M4 MCU with hardware cryptography suites, and WINC1510, a low-power 802.11 b/g/n certified Wi-Fi module.
Leveraging the hardware-based security engines within this Wi-Fi HomeKit, system calculation times are greatly reduced. The kit results in a dramatic reduction in execution time for HomeKit commands such as pairing. Pair setup is implemented in 0.95 seconds and pair verify in less than one tenth of a second. This leads to a fast and friendly end-user experience such as instantly unlocking a front door, notes Microchip.
Furthermore, this reduced time of system activity also results in lower power consumption. The firm claims that the power consumption while performing critical commands such as pairing is on par with Bluetooth low energy-based systems while retaining the enhanced functionality of a Wi-Fi solution.
The Wi-Fi SDK features the CEC1702, a hardware cryptography-enabled 32-bit MCU. The MCU boasts hardware security features such as secure boot which allows equipment manufacturers to establish a hardware-based root of trust to protect against a security breach.
Other integrated security features on the MCU include easy-to-use encryption, authentication, private and public key capabilities and customer programming flexibility to minimize application risk.
Additionally, the MCU features 480 KB SRAM code plus data, which gives developers ample code space for the HomeKit protocol as well as their application-specific code.
“The increasing popularity of home automation with consumers necessitates connected designs to react instantly when a command is issued,” said Ian Harris, vice president of Microchip’s computing products group. “Consumers don’t have the patience to wait several seconds for their device to pair every time they want to unlock their front door. Our Wi-Fi SDK provides pairing speeds of less than one tenth of a second along with industry-leading security features such as secure boot that are crucial for development in the smart home market.”
As development support, Microchip offers a new SecureIoT1702 development board which includes the CEC1702 MCU, a compact, high-contrast, serial graphic LCD display module, push buttons and two expansion headers compatible with the MikroElektronika mikroBUS Expansion interface.
This board can be paired with a WINC1510 Wi-Fi click board and a separately available MFi chip, offering MFi licensees the basic building blocks to create HomeKit applications.
The SecureIoT1702 development board is available for $99.99 each. The CEC1702Q-B1-SX MCU is available in production volume for $2.60 each in 10,000 unit quantities. The ATWINC1510 Wi-Fi module is available in production volume for $8.95 each in 10,000 unit quantities
The Wi-Fi SDK is available to MFI licensees only. For more information on the Wi-Fi SDK, click here.
To view the full Press release, click here.