Review the Nordic Wi-Fi Locationing Solution with nRF7002-EK and nRF9160-DK

Table of contents

Nordic’s SSID-based Wi-Fi locationing solution leverages the nRF7002 IC for Wi-Fi scanning and the nRF9160 Series SiP for cellular communication to Nordic’s nRF Cloud.

Introduction to Nordic's SSID-based Wi-Fi Locationing Solution

The Nordic nRF70002 companion IC is a unique, low-power Wi-Fi 6 chip, optimized for Wi-Fi scanning. When used along with Nordic’s nRF9160 Series cellular System-in-Package (SiP), it enables SSID-based Wi-Fi locationing. Instead of using the traditional means for locationing, SSID-based Wi-Fi locationing scans the signals from nearby Wi-Fi access points to determine the location. Nordic’s SSID-based Wi-Fi locationing enables accurate, high efficiency, location determination in both indoors and out of doors. The solution uses the nRF7002 IC for Wi-Fi scanning and an nRF9160 Series SiP for cellular communication to Nordic’s nRF Cloud.

nRF7002-EK: Evaluation Kit for nRF70 Series Wi-Fi 6 companion ICs

The nRF7002 EK is a versatile evaluation kit in the form of an Arduino shield. This kit is designed to complement our nRF52840 DK, nRF5340 DK, and nRF9160 DK, providing an easy way to evaluate and harness the power of the nRF70 Series of Wi-Fi companion ICs.

Equipped with the nRF7002 companion IC, the nRF7002 EK unlocks low-power Wi-Fi 6 capabilities for your host device. Seamlessly connect to Wi-Fi networks and leverage Wi-Fi-based locationing, enabling advanced features such as SSID sniffing of local Wi-Fi hubs. The nRF7002 is specifically designed to integrate with Nordic's nRF52 and nRF53 Series multiprotocol SoCs, as well as the nRF91 Series cellular IoT SiP. It can also be used alongside non-Nordic host devices.

To communicate with the host processor, the nRF7002 EK supports SPI or QSPI interfaces. The unique wireless coexistence support on the nRF70 Series ensures that protocols such as Bluetooth Low Energy, Thread, or Zigbee can seamlessly co-exist with Wi-Fi. The nRF7002 is fully integrated into Nordic's nRF Connect SDK, making development simple. While the nRF7002 DK is a complete development kit, the nRF7002 EK is an evaluation companion, requiring a host development Kit to unleash its full potential.

The combination of nRF9160 DK and the nRF7002 EK enables developers to combine the capabilities of cellular IoT and Wi-Fi. The nRF7002 EK can also be used to emulate the nRF7001 and nRF7000 ICs. A combination of an nRF91 Series cellular SiP and an nRF7000 IC has GNSS, cell-based locationing, and SSID-based Wi-Fi locationing capabilities. This enables the best possible location results in most conditions.

nRF9160 DK: Cellular IoT development kit for LTE-M, NB-IoT, GNSS and Bluetooth LE

The nRF9160 DK is an affordable, pre-certified single-board development kit for evaluation and development on the nRF9160 SiP for LTE-M, NB-IoT and GNSS. It also includes an nRF52840 board controller that for example can be used to build a Bluetooth Low Energy gateway.

It has a dedicated LTE-M and NB-IoT antenna that supports a wide range of bands, to operate globally. LTE bands B1, B2, B3, B4, B5, B8, B12, B13, B14, B17, B18, B19, B20, B25, B26, B28 and B66 have been certified. See the nRF9160 certifications page for more details.

A dedicated patch antenna for GNSS, and a 2.4 GHz antenna to be used with Bluetooth LE are included on the board. SWF RF connectors are available for the LTE-M/NB-IoT and 2.4 GHz antennas. A connector is also available to attach an external GNSS antenna.

All GPIOs and interfaces (SPI/TWI/UART), are available via connectors. The kit is Arduino Uno Rev3 compatible, meaning it can be easily interfaced with external device shields like the nRF7002 EK.

User-programmable LEDs (4), buttons (2) and switches (2) are available to easily give input and get output. The nRF9160 DK has both a 4FF SIM card slot and an MFF2 SIM footprint, to support both plug-in and soldered (e)SIMs. It is bundled with an eSIM card from iBasis preloaded with 10 MB.

Programming and debugging are enabled through the Segger J-Link OB, which also supports external targets. The nRF9160 DK is supported by a full suite of development software and tools. All free to download and use commercially.

nRF Connect SDK includes everything needed to get started, application layer protocols, examples, peripheral drivers and more. The kit can easily be connected to our cloud solution, nRF Cloud. The Cellular Monitor tool located in nRF Connect for Desktop provides an interface to capture and analyze modem traces, which gives insights into modem behavior, enhancing development, testing, and optimization if your cellular IoT application. The nRF9160 SiP and nRF9160 development kits are in production and are suitable for full end-to-end sensor to cloud development.

RoadTester Poll

Documentation

nRF7002 EK Datasheet

nRF7002 User Guide

nRF7002 EK Hardware

nRF7002 EK Downloads

Datasheet Set 2:

nRF9160 DK datasheet

nRF9160 User Guide – the point for getting started with nRF9160 DK on TechDocs.

nRF9160 Hardware

nRF9160 DK Downloads

Contents

  • Dev Kit NRF9160, eSIM Card
  • Evaluation Kit nRF7002

Roadtester Instructions

  • Working with the documentation, open the box and test the out of the box experience of the eval kit.
  • Show the reader of this review what you discovered about the eval kit through text, images, videos, and/or any other media, so the reader understands what is involved in using the product.

The sponsor is particularly interest in getting feedback on the following:

  • Getting started experience on kits
  • Getting started experience on nRF Cloud

Important Dates

Enrollment Begins Mar 28, 2024
Enrollment Ends Apr 29, 2024
RoadTesters Selected May 1, 2024
Kits Are Shipped TBD
Testing Begins TBD
Element14 Progress Follow Up TBD
Reviews Posted by TBD

Terms and Conditions

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About Nordic Semiconductor

Nordic Semiconductor is a Norwegian fabless semiconductor company specializing in wireless communication technology that powers the Internet of Things (IoT). Nordic was established in 1983 and has about 1450 employees across the globe. Our award-winning Bluetooth Low Energy solutions pioneered ultra-low power wireless, making us the global market leader. Our technology range was later supplemented by ANT+, Thread and Zigbee, and in 2018 we launched our low power, compact LTE-M/NB-IoT cellular IoT solutions to extend the penetration of the IoT. The Nordic portfolio was further complemented by Wi-Fi technology in 2021.

We built our market reputation by supplying leading-edge wireless technologies supported by development tools that shield the designer from RF complexity, allowing anyone with a bright idea to build innovations based on the IoT platform. Today, our award-winning, high-performance, yet easy to design-in, Bluetooth LE solutions are used by the world’s leading brands in a variety of products, including wireless PC peripherals, gaming, sports and fitness, mobile phone accessories, consumer electronics, toys, healthcare and automation. Nordic is a member of the ANT+ Alliance, Bluetooth SIG, Thread Group, Connectivity Standards Alliance, Wi-Fi Alliance, and GSMA.

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