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Project update 5 of 11
Your smartphone doesn’t support all possible wireless protocols. Using the Tah as a bridge, you can connect to various communication networks by using shields. In this week’s update we have connected a smartphone to a XBee network using Tah as a middleman. Check out the video and the tutorial.
We are happy to announce that we have made yet another significant update to the board design over the current one. In this version, we have:
Switched from TQFP to QFN packaging for the microcontroller — We were using the TQFP packaging on the Tah boards for the 32u4 microcontroller as it was easy for us to solder them manually when we were prototyping. This won’t be necessary when we go into production, so we replaced the TQFP package with the smaller QFN packaging.
Rearranged pins — In the previous version we had pins on 3 sides of the BLE antenna. This was done to reduce the footprint and make the Tah a bit more compact. With the help of a different package, we were able to rearrange the pins and still keep the footprint at nearly the same size. This has considerably reduced the interference caused by the pins.
With the above changes, we have achieved two critical new features:
Extended BLE connectivity range — The new arrangement of the pins has improved the robustness of the BLE connectivity. As a result, the BLE range itself has gone up by about 10 feet.
Breadboard compatibility — We will be shipping the Tah boards with female headers, but we adjusted the spacing on the board so you can place the Tah on a pair of breadboards using some male Berg pins. This will make prototyping with the Tah a lot easier.
Side by side comparison of both designs: