Connect One Introduces Nano WiReach Embedded WiFi Module

Connect One[tm], the Device Networking Authority[tm], released Nano WiReach, an embedded WiFi bridge that quickly and easily connects any embedded device to 802.11b/g wireless LANs with minimal programming. Measuring only 1.7×3.3 centimeters, the Nano WiReach’s multiple hardware interfaces and extensive firmware functionality make it the most advanced and versatile WiFi solution for embedded devices today.

Based on Connect One’s iChipSec CO2144 IP controller chip, Nano WiReach includes a full suite of Internet protocols and applications, enabling immediate and full – featured connectivity for embedded solutions without any WiFi driver development or porting.

Nano WiReach’s firmware supports several modes of operation:

  • LAN to WiFi Bridge — allowing transparent bridging of LAN over WiFi using direct RMII connection to existing MAC hardware. Any microcontroller with a built-in Ethernet MAC can be connected to WiFi with zero development effort
  • Serial to WiFi Bridge — enabling transparent bridging of serial data over WiFi using the module’s speedy 3-Mbps UART
  • Full Internet Controller mode — allowing simple microcontrollers to use the Nano WiReach’s rich protocol and application capabilities to perform complex Internet operations such as e-mail, FTP, SSL, embedded web server and others. Internet controller mode can be used with any hardware interface
  • Embedded IP Routing — allowing multiple WiFi clients to user a single WAN connection to the Internet, using the Nano WiReach as a router
  • PPP emulation — offering existing (e.g., cellular modem) designs currently using PPP to interface to the cellular modem by connecting transparently over WiFi with no changes to application or drivers

Nano WiReach includes RMII, USB, SPI and fast UART interfaces for easy integration into existing or new designs. It is available in two versions — one with an antenna connector and one with a built-in antenna.

Nano WiReach offers a highly advanced level of Internet security. It includes the latest WiFi encryption algorithms (WPA/WPA2, in both PSK and enterprise modes) and Internet SSL encryption algorithms. In addition, it serves as an inherent firewall, protecting the embedded application from attacks originating from the Internet.

“Customers are looking for easy and cost-effective ways to WiFi-enable devices with serial, LAN, or cellular modem connections,” noted Ariel Shulman, Vice President Sales for Connect One. “Nano WiReach offers an immediate solution, reducing time to market and allowing customers to launch cost-effective WiFi-enabled products. Because of its tiny footprint, flexible firmware, hardware options, and hardened Internet security, we expect this module to be widely adopted by device manufactures.”

Nano WiReach effectively and quickly WiFi-enables devices that use any kind of embedded real-time operating system. Designers do not need to port/write WiFi drivers or significantly reprogram their applications to connect to WiFi using the Nano WiReach. In Internet Controller mode, Nano WiReach is driven by simple text commands and offloads the WiFi drivers, WPA supplicant, Internet security, networking protocols, and all communication tasks from the host microcontroller and application. This offloading of communication tasks frees up host processing bandwidth and simplifies the wireless design process. Since Nano WiReach’s firmware is remotely updateable, new security or connectivity protocols do not require application redesign, increased memory, or faster processor speeds.

Large-volume customers can benefit from functionality identical to the Nano WiReach’s while realizing significant cost savings by opting for an onboard implementation of the iChipSec CO2144 and a Marvell 88W8686-based chipset. Reference designs outlining the transition, can be downloaded from Connect One’s website.

Nano WiReach supports 10 simultaneous TCP/UDP sockets; two listening TCP sockets; SMTP, MIME, POP3, FTP, Telnet, and HTTP/HTTPS clients; an HTTP/HTTPS embedded Web server with a website for the host application and one for configuring the module. Nano WiReach supports 64/128-bit WEP, WPA/WPA2 (PSK and Enterprise) encryption, AES-128/256, SHA-128/192/256, 3DES; the SSL3/TLS1 protocol for a secure client socket session and a secure FTP session.

The module operates at an industrial temperature range of -40° to 85° C (-40° to 185° F) and is RoHS-compliant.

Availability and Evaluation Board
Nano WiReach will be available in November. Pricing starts at $59. The II-EVB-363MW evaluation board provides an easy environment for developing applications and testing Nano WiReach.

About Connect One
Established in 1996, Connect One Ltd. is widely regarded as the device networking authority, with many innovative firsts to its credit. The company manufactures semiconductors and device servers that facilitate secure, reliable and robust Internet Protocol-based communication for everyday devices. Connect One is privately owned, with offices in San Jose, CA, Japan, Hong Kong, and Kfar Saba, Israel.

Connect One, The Device Networking Authority, iChip, iChipSec, Internet Controller, AT+i, SerialNET, WiReach and Socket iWiFi are trademarks of Connect One Ltd.