Nordic Semiconductor SoC touts advanced security features for the most complex IoT applications

Article By : Stephen Las Marias

Nordic Semiconductor's nRF5340 high-end multiprotocol SoC based on an Arm Cortex-M33 has received the Best RF & Wireless IC of the Year award at EE Awards Asia.

Established in 1983 in Norway, Nordic Semiconductor is a fabless semiconductor company that specializes in short- and long-range wireless communication technology and the software protocols that powers the Internet of Things (IoT). Its Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) solutions pioneered ultra-low-power wireless connectivity, positioning the company as a global leader in wireless technology.

At present, Nordic Semiconductor’s portfolio covers the needs of low-power applications and demanding IoT ecosystems, supporting proprietary, ANT+, Thread, Zigbee, and the all-unifying Matter protocols.

Answer to IoT Challenges

Reliability and security are critical for any serious IoT application. According to Nordic Semiconductor, manufacturers should be able to trust that their data transmissions are actually received correctly and also have not been compromised in any way. This is important when connecting thousands of devices in industrial automation, and even more so in healthcare monitoring applications.

One unique solution to address these issues is the company’s nRF5340 high-end multiprotocol system-on-chip (SoC)—the world’s first wireless SoC based on an Arm Cortex-M33.

The nRF5340 SoC builds on Nordic Semiconductor’s proven and globally adopted nRF51 and nRF52 Series multiprotocol SoCs while introducing a new flexible, dual-processor hardware architecture with advanced security features ready for the most complex IoT applications. The nRF5340 combines dual Arm Cortex-M33 processors; a high-performance application processor capable of DSP and Floating Point (FP), offering voltage and frequency scaling options and running up to 128MHz (514 CoreMark) with dedicated 1MB Flash and 512KB RAM, and a fully programmable, ultra-low-power network processor running at 64MHz (244 CoreMark) with dedicated 256KB Flash and 64KB RAM.

The nRF5340 SoC supports major RF protocols and has been designed to meet the requirements of LE Audio, enabling audio streaming over Bluetooth LE. For security, the nRF5340 incorporates Arm CryptoCell-312, Arm TrustZone technology, and Secure Key Storage offering advanced root-of-trust and trusted execution security features.

In fact, nRF5340 has received the Best RF & Wireless IC of the Year award at the inaugural EE Awards Asia.

“Nordic Semiconductor is delighted to receive this award for the nRF5340 SoC. We’re pleased to see analysts and customers recognize it for its ability to add extra value to wireless products. As a leader in IoT connectivity, Nordic is confident the nRF5340 SoC will enable new and unique IoT applications,” says Bjørn Åge “Bob” Brandal, Nordic Semiconductor, VP of Sales and Marketing, Asia Pacific. “EE Times has a long history both globally and in this region, and is a widely respected information source. It’s widely read, and industry veterans use its pages to enjoy hot debates about various technological issues. It’s an honor to receive this award from EE TimesEE Awards Asia celebrates the best products, companies, and individuals across the continent’s highly regarded electronics industry.”

Moving Forward

The semiconductor industry is experiencing challenging times, but Nordic Semiconductor remains on its growth trajectory, with its unique wireless portfolio and protocol support spanning every part of the low-power IoT market.

Amid continuing demand for Bluetooth LE and multiprotocol solutions across the many verticals—from wireless PC peripherals to gaming and AR/VR; to sports and fitness, and healthcare and automation, the company continues to innovate and design hardware and software to support all these markets.

“We invest globally in R&D, sales and marketing, and supply chain logistics. Our intention is to exit the year knowing that we have done our best to support existing and future customers. Putting the customer first has always been an integral part of the Nordic Semiconductor DNA,” Brandal concludes.


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