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A tiny platform for custom wireless mobile devices

Oct 10, 2007 — by LinuxDevices Staff — from the LinuxDevices Archive

CompuLab has introduced a tiny SBC (single-board computer) aimed at mobile device applications. The EM-X270 is based on a PXA270 processor, and integrates a touchscreen LCD controller, WAN, WLAN, and WPAN wireless, GPS, and an assortment of I/O ports, and is offered with a Linux OS.


EM-X270 top (left) and bottom (right)
(Click each image to enlarge)

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Key features and specs of the EM-X270 module, as listed by the company, include:

  • Processor — PXA270, clocked at 312 or 520 MHz
  • Memory — 128MB SDRAM; 512MB on-board flash
  • Graphics — supports STN and TFT, up to 800 x 600 pixels in 4/8/16-bit color
  • Wireless:
    • WAN — quad-band GSM/GPRS radio; on-board SIM socket
    • WLAN — WiFi
    • WPAN — Bluetooth
    • GPS — NAVMAN Jupiter32 receiver module, based on Sirf III GPS chipset
  • Audio — AC97 codec with microphone input and stereo output
  • Other I/O:
    • USB host/slave port
    • RS232, I2C, and SPI
    • Camera interface
  • Expansion:
    • SDIO/MMC card socket
    • Board-to-board expansion connector (described below)
  • Size — 3.8 x 2.6 inches (97 x 66 mm)
  • Weight — 3.5 ounces (100 gm), without optional LCD and battery
  • Power:
    • Operating — 0.2 to 2 W excluding GPRS; 1-2 W including GPRS
    • Sleep –10 – 50 mW, depending on configuration/mode
  • Operating temperature — available in 0 to 70 deg. C (standard), 20 to 70 deg. C (extended), and -40 to 85 deg. C (commercial) ranges


EM-X270 SBC block diagram
(Click to enlarge)

The company points out that the EM-X270's size and mounting hole pattern are intended to facilitates the SBC's integration into the specialized enclosures required for custom mobile device applications.

The EM-X270 is also available with a 3.5-inch VGA touchscreen LCD (shown below), as well as with an on-board 3000mAh Li-polymer battery.


EM-X270 with optional LCD — don't worry, it also runs Linux!

Compulab says the EM-X270's board-to-board expansion connector brings out the full 32-bit local bus, display interface, and other signals, allowing the EM-X270 to be extended by means of either off-the-shelf or application-specific companion boards. One such board (the EB-X270), currently offered by the company, includes a 5V DC power supply, VGA controller, Ethernet, and some general purpose I/O signals. Presumably other standard expansion options will follow.


EM-X270 SBC with optional EB-X270 companion board
(Click to enlarge)

On the software side, the EM-X270 SBC comes with the open-source U-Boot bootloader, and its operating system support comprises Linux (with the GPE mobile device application framework) and Windows CE 6 BSPs (board-support packages).

Availability

According to Compulab, the EM-X270 SBC is available now as part of an evaluation kit offered at $2300. The SBC's price drops to $122 for a “basic configuration” at quantities of 1K units, and it can be “configured-to-order” in lots of 100 or more, the company added.


 
This article was originally published on LinuxDevices.com and has been donated to the open source community by QuinStreet Inc. Please visit LinuxToday.com for up-to-date news and articles about Linux and open source.



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