NEWS: TI makes USB connectivity smarter, faster, easier - Embedded.com

NEWS: TI makes USB connectivity smarter, faster, easier

Dallas, Texas – With the aim of making universal serial bus design as simple as possible, Texas Instruments has just introduced a portfolio of 35 ultra low power MSP430F55XX microcontrollers designed to meet as many USB connectivity options as is possible.

In addition, it has also introduced a new USB configuration tool that automates the configuration of the USB stack to reflect the specific requirements of a particular application,

According to Les Taylor, USB product marketing engineer, with the wide adoption of USB connectivity, designers are seeking smart embedded processing solutions that bring unique advantages to their applications such as longer battery life, portability and versatility.

With full-speed 12 Mbps USB connectivity, he said, the new F55xx devices are specifically designed for cost-sensitive applications including portable measurement for medical, industrial, and health and fitness, as well as consumer electronics and a broad range of other applications.

According to Taylor, a new USB Stack Configuration Tool plays a key role in simplifying USB design and implementation. He said this GUI-based tool automatically configures the USB stack to reflect the specific requirements of a particular application, handling the management of descriptor fields including VID, PID, strings, how much power to draw from the host, and so on.

“Rather than require developers to delve into the details behind the various USB descriptor fields by breaking into the USB stack and writing code to support their application,” said Taylor, “the descriptor tool gathers the required information from developers and automatically generates the appropriate software modifications to the API stacks, requiring no further work from developers. In addition, te tool configures high-level stack functions, such as composite devices.”

The USB Stack Configuration Tool can be used to generate the descriptor.c file that fits into the USB API stacks and gather information for the common descriptor fields and generate the C file, specifically for the device descriptor fields (VIP, PID), string descriptor fields like the Vendor string, product string and the device string and the configuration descriptors fields which specify bus/self powered, supports remote wakeup, current drawn from host and the endpoint descriptors

At the very beginning of the USB development, this tool can be used to configure the high level stacks functions such as endpoint configuration, making it very useful especially in composite device configuration, as well as at the very end of the development flow when the user has the VID and PID ready for the USB device, which is usually ready only by the end of the development flow), where it can also be used again to again to generate the descriptor.c file.

Key features and benefits of the MSP430F55xx include five low-power modes with active mode at 200 uA/MHz and standby mode at 2.5 microAmperes with wake-up from standby mode in less than 5 microseconds for extended battery life as well as an expanded memory range covering 8KB to 128KB flash offers easy migration path

The devices include 10-bit or 12-bit ADC options that consume less than 200 microAmperes during operation, and an ultra-low power sub-microampere comparator designed for wide application usage. Integrated intelligent peripherals include a hardware multiplier, four 16-bit timers, and up to four interfaces of serial communication including UART, SPI, and I2C.

Various package options include 48-pin (QFP, QFN), 64-pin (QFN), 80-pin (QFP, BGA) and fully integrated LDO powered directly from the 5V bus power to save cost and board space.

To further jump start USB development, said Taylor, TI is also providing all the necessary tools to get projects up and running quickly regardless of a developers' USB experience, including a free Vendor ID and Product ID (VID/PID) sharing program. TI's MSP430 Code Composer Essentials tool chain is included along with all the required hardware.

F55xx MCUs are priced from sub-$1 in large volumes. All are instruction set compatible with the entire MSP430 platform. The MSP430F552x sample kit is available now and includes two 80-pin QFN sample devices, TS430PN80USB target board and supporting documents and software to get started.

The MSP430F552x MCUs are sampling today with production volumes as early as November 2009. This device is fully compatible with the $149 MSP-FET430U80USB and $99 MSP-FET430UIF flash emulation tools.

For more information, go to www.ti.com.

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