Deep dive with Dario: A closer look at the new Arduino Nano 33 IoT
The Nano form factor has been a crowd-pleaser amongst makers for years due to its small footprint and ease of integration into any project. As announced at Maker Faire Bay Area, the Nano 33 IoT is part of the new 3.3V variant of the family with an Arm Cortex-M0+ microcontroller and a pre-certified ESP32-based WiFi and Bluetooth module from u-blox that brings sophisticated connectivity to its tiny package. The inclusion of an ECC608A crypto chip means it also offers IoT security features not usually available at such a low price point.
Today, we sat down with Dario Pennisi, Arduino hardware and firmware development manager, to learn more about the Nano 33 IoT.
What are three key features of this board? How will they impact the experience of our users?
1. Secure WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity with a 6-axis IMU.
2. Pre-certified module with external processor ensures maintaining RF compliance when writing application code versus ESP32 modules where modifying code impacts certification.
3. On-board DC-DC power supply enables the board to be powered up to 21V maintaining high efficiency and offering a lot of current to external devices without overheating. This is a big improvement over other products on the market that have LDO and heat up quite a bit when powered at high voltages.
What are a few applications and why is this board a great option for them?
1. Add WiFi and Bluetooth connectivity with strong security to all the existing Arduino Nano applications.
2. On-board IMU can be used to wirelessly monitor vibration, orientation, and rotational speed of small objects thanks to its lightweight and compact form factor.
3. Run directly from high voltages from lead or multi-cell Lithium-ion batteries providing 3.3V power supply to peripherals at significant output current.
Which Arduino board is the most similar to the Nano 33?
The Nano 33 IoT is essentially a MKR WiFi 1010, but sacrifices a battery charger and shield compatibility in favor of a miniaturized footprint (45×18 mm) and lower cost. The Nano 33 IoT is built around the ESP32, which is primarily aimed at WiFi but supports Bluetooth as well, although with higher power consumption than the Nano 33 BLE.
The Arduino Nano 33 IoT is available in pre-order in the Arduino online store with headers (estimate shipping date: end of July 2019) or without headers mounted (estimated shipping date: mid-June 2019).