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Press releases

19 April 2011

Microchip introduces wireless Machine-to-Machine (M2M) PICtail™ daughter board with u‑blox GPS and GSM modules

Board based upon u‑blox GPS and GSM/GPRS modules makes it easy to create low-cost M2M applications with location-awareness capabilities
Microchip M2M PICtail™ Daughter Board With u‑blox GPS and GSM Modules
Microchip M2M PICtail™ Daughter Board With u‑blox GPS and GSM Modules
Thalwil, Switzerland and Chandler, Arizona, April 19, 2011 - Microchip Technology Inc. [NASDAQ: MCHP], a leading provider of microcontroller, analog and Flash-IP solutions, today announced a Machine-to-Machine (M2M) PICtail™ Daughter Board that comes with all of the hardware, wireless communication protocols and application code examples needed to help designers jump start their fleet-management or location-based service application. Developed with u‑blox [SIX: UBXN], the new Daughter Board includes the u‑blox NEO-6Q GPS and LEON GSM/GPRS modules, and interfaces with Microchip’s Multimedia Expansion Board, and PIC32 Starter Kit. The board enables the quick and easy creation of designs offering communications, as well as a complete graphics interface, with audio, accelerometer and networking capabilities.

Many developers wish to add location awareness and communications to their designs, such as those involving fleet management, monitoring traffic congestion and observing driving habits for insurance-rate structures. In addition to integrated GPS for tracking via satellites, the M2M PICtail Daughter Board comes with Global System for Mobile (GSM) and General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) technology to enable phone, text, e-mail and Web communications, including images and location information. Microchip also offers free-for-download M2M software libraries, to give developers a head start on their coding efforts and reduce time to market.

“The M2M PICtail Daughter Board provides developers with an easy-to-use, economical platform for the development of fleet management, asset tracking and telematic applications, among others,” said Sumit Mitra, vice president of Microchip’s High-Performance Microcontroller Division. “Together with our Multimedia Expansion Board and PIC32 Starter Kit, Microchip provides a flexible solution that enables customers to get to market sooner.”

Thomas Nigg, Vice President of Product Marketing at u‑blox, added, “As a leading provider of embedded GPS and wireless communications technologies in the market for telematics applications, we are pleased that Microchip has chosen to partner with us to develop the M2M PICtail solution. With this platform, our customers can drastically cut their development time and bring their products to market more quickly.”

Daughter Board Pricing & Availability
The M2M PICtail Daughter Board is available for purchase at microchipDIRECT today. Designers who already own a Microchip Multimedia Expansion Board and PIC32 Starter Kit can simply purchase the Daughter Board to add GPS/GSM/GPRS functionality to their designs.  Alternatively, all three components can be purchased individually, for under $500 total, including the debugger/programmer that is built into the PIC32 Starter Kit.

For further information, contact any Microchip sales representative or authorized worldwide distributors.