October 2016 57
Photo 2 is a rear view of the BM70 PICtail
Plus. The lone IC is a Microchip MCP2200 USB-to-UART converter. For now, the only way we
can communicate with the BM70 radio module
is via its UART pins. The BM70 is also capable of
speaking I2C and SPI.
Currently, there is no support for I2C and SPI
in the version 1.06 firmware. Screenshot 3 shows
us connected to the PICtail Plus via my PC’s
COM4 serial interface. Screenshot 3 also reveals
the quartet of 1.06 firmware image files that
we will push up to our down-level BM70 radio
module. According to Screenshot 4, our BM70
firmware update required 18.357 seconds.
We are going to use the BLEDK3
configuration tool to configure our BM70 as
a peripheral device. The other end of our BLE
(Bluetooth Low Energy) link is an iPad which
is acting in the BLE central role. Once we have our BLE
configuration in place, we will use the Manual Pattern
Test Tool to control the operation of our newly configured
BM70. This tool enables us to issue commands and view
command results using a PC.
The first order of business is to place the BM70 PICtail
ADVANCED TECHNIQUES FOR DESIGN ENGINEERS
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n SCREENSHOT 2. These files were
downloaded from links on the BM70
Microchip Developer Help page. You can
immediately identify these files as version 1.06
from their file names. n PHOTO 2. Yep. The BM70 can be powered with a simple coin cell.
n SCREENSHOT 3. Updating the BM70 firmware is a no-brainer.
Fire up the BLEDK3 UI Configuration Tool, click the UPDATE
button, connect to the BM70, browse for the firmware files, load the
selected files, and smack the UPDATE button.
n SCREENSHOT 4. In less than 20 seconds, our
BM70 is loaded with the latest and greatest firmware
version. From here on out, we will use the BLEDK3 UI
Configuration Tool to configure our updated BM70 radio