Advantages of the Digi XBee3™ Cellular Datasheet by Digi

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THE ADVANTAGES OF DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR 1
THE ADVANTAGES
OF DIGI XBEE3
CELLULAR
Native MicroPython Programming, Digi TrustFence®
Security, Software Flexibility, and USB Option Open
Up New Markets and Applications to OEMs
DIGI.’ m
THE ADVANTAGES OF DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR 2
EXPANDING THE DIGI XBEE3
ECOSYSTEM
With the Digi XBee3 Cellular family of embedded
modems, developers can bring together the power
and flexibility of the Digi XBee3 ecosystem with
the latest 4G cellular technology. That means a
faster path to embedding 4G cellular technology
into their devices and applications without time-
consuming, expensive FCC and carrier end-device
certifications.
With a full set of standard Digi XBee3 API frames
and AT commands, Digi XBee3 customers can
seamlessly transition to this new modem with only
minor software adjustments. When OEMs add
the Digi XBee3 Cellular modem to their design,
they create a future-proof design with flexibility to
switch between wireless protocols or frequencies
as needed, ideal for any business with an
agile roadmap.
In the pages that follow, you’ll learn about some
of the key advantages of the Digi XBee3 Cellular
solution:
Native MicroPython Programming
Digi TrustFence Security
Software Flexibility
MICROPYTHON PROGRAMMABILITY
MicroPython is an open-source programming
language based on Python 3 that has been
optimized to fit on small devices with limited
hardware resources (e.g. micro-controllers).
It includes an interactive read-evaluate-print
loop (REPL) that enables you to connect to an
embedded board and execute code without
compiling or uploading, making it ideal for quick
testing of code blocks and prototyping. It also
includes extensive built-in software libraries to
accelerate and simplify programming tasks like
network socket connections or I/O
pin management.
Digi XBee3 Cellular offers native support for
MicroPython programmability. With 24 KB of RAM
and 8 KB of Flash available in this MicroPython
“sandbox,” you have the power and flexibility to
develop and integrate your own unique features.
For basic sensing/actuating applications, it can
eliminate the need for an external microcontroller,
saving PCB space and simplifying your
hardware design.
MicroPython is ideal for reading and/or controlling
Digi XBee3 I/O lines (13 digital I/Os, four analog
10-bit inputs). It can also reduce cellular data
consumption by adding local intelligence that
dictates what data should and should not be sent
over the air.
“CWT-mid mw-Immhmmmmummmmrm mwumimhm. ~ »" E1 E COMB - 115W" croPython v1.3.7-9sa-gc232m on 2011-05-15; me cellular um 5mm Yypel l'helpO‘ for m infometiou. >>> 00
THE ADVANTAGES OF DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR 3
MICROPYTHON TERMINAL IN XCTU
The most recent XCTU release (v7.0) includes
a new MicroPython terminal, which allows you
to interact with MicroPython on the Digi XBee3
Cellular modem. Through the serial interface in the
terminal, you can interact with the REPL to test,
load, and run MicroPython code. Of course, many
users prefer to use their own terminal program like
Tera Term or Putty and can continue to do so. But
with the new terminal in XCTU, you have the option
to discover, configure, and program your Digi
XBee3 Cellular modem through a single interface.
FIND OUT MORE ABOUT
MICROPYTHON
Check out the following resources to learn more
about MicroPython and Digi XBee3 Cellular:
Get Started with MicroPython
(Section in User Guide 90001525)
Digi MicroPython Programming Guide
(90002219)
MicroPython Homepage (micropython.org)
MicroPython Github
(https://github.com/micropython)
DIGI.’ @@@@@
THE ADVANTAGES OF DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR 4
DIGI TRUSTFENCE: STRONGER
SECURITY FOR THE IOT
Network connectivity means IoT applications
and devices face significant new risks and
threats, which makes embedded security a
critical requirement. Digi TrustFence provides a
tested and fully integrated security framework
for the long product life of embedded devices
that use Digi XBee3 Cellular devices.
The Digi TrustFence security framework
provides a series of critical features that
ensure top-to-bottom security, including
secure connections, authenticated boot,
secure physical ports, and more. Digi XBee3
Cellular implements key elements of the Digi
TrustFence framework, including:
Security threats to embedded devices in IoT
solutions are increasingly common, and the
sophistication of these attacks is growing. They
can include confidentiality breaches, service theft,
data integrity, and reduced service availability. IoT
systems have unique security requirements and
challenges, mostly due to resource limitations.
Digi XBee3 Cellular embedded modems use Digi
TrustFence for out-of-the-box, integrated security
that lets you build secure, connected products.
SOFTWARE FLEXIBILITY
The Digi XBee3 Cellular leapfrogs the typical
breakout boards in its features, functionality, and
ease of development. A typical breakout board
“breaks out” the pins of an underlying cellular
module onto a printed circuit board, so you can
access and use individual pins, but usually offers
little or no additional functionality. Some breakout
boards include end-device certification, a SIM slot,
a simple power supply, and an antenna connector.
That leaves you with the tasks of designing in an
external microcontroller to manage the module,
integrating security elements into the design, and
other complex development tasks.
By contrast, Digi XBee3 Cellular hardware is fully
integrated with an onboard cellular module, ARM
Cortex M3 microcontroller, power regulator, and
security chip, all packed into a compact 24.4 mm
x 32.9 mm Digi XBee3 through-hole footprint. This
provides numerous useful features unavailable on
other cellular modules or breakout boards.
SEE FIGURE 1 (pg. 6)
Secure Boot – Digi TrustFence
ensures only signed software
images run on a device.
Encrypted Storage
Security keys are protected
by an onboard security chip.
Protected JTAG
The programming interface is
locked to prevent tampering.
Secure Connections
SSL/TLS v1.2 encryption secures
your data transmissions.
Lifecycle Longevity
Digi maintains a future-proof
platform architecture.
DIGI.
THE ADVANTAGES OF DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR 5
FIGURE 1: DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR LTE-M BLOCK DIAGRAM
POWER MANAGEMENT
Deep Sleep <10 uA
Cyclic Sleep
Pin Sleep
Airplane Mode
Connected Sleep
PSM
MICROPYTHON
24 KB RAM
8 KB
XBEE ABSTRACTION LAYER
Transparent Mode
XBee API Mode
XBee AT Commands
Bypass Mode
CELLULAR CONNECTIVITY
Cellular Module
LTE-M
4FF Nano-SIM Slot
MCU
ARM Cortex M3
HARDWARE INTERFACES
Ix UART
Ix SPI
I3x Digital IO
4x 10-bit ADC
2x U.FL Antenna
SECURITY
Secure Element Chip
Secure Boot
Protected JTAG
SSL/TLS 1.2
Digi XBee3 software interface – The Digi
XBee3 software interface runs on the onboard
microcontroller and provides an abstraction
layer for software designers, including a common
AT command interface for configuration and
control, an API mode for external devices to
intelligently communicate with the XBee, and
a transparent serial mode for simple and
transparent communications through the UART,
over the cellular network, to the destination IP
address or phone number.
A future-proof design – The Digi XBee3
software interface is consistent across all
current and future Digi XBee modules that all
share the same footprint. That means you can
easily drop new wireless technologies into your
design as they roll out – including LTE-Mobile,
NarrowBand-IoT, or even LoRa.
Deep sleep mode – In this mode, Digi XBee3
Cellular consumes less than 10 uA. This feature
can be configured as cyclic sleep or pin-activated
sleep. By contrast, other breakout boards
support “low power modes” that, in fact, draw
significantly more power.
DIGI.
THE ADVANTAGES OF DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR 6
SERIAL INTERFACE OPTIONS
Digi XBee3 Cellular offers several interface options
for connecting to a microcontroller or host device:
UART, or Universal Asynchronous Receiver-
Transmitter, is an asynchronous serial
communication in which the data format and
transmission speeds are configurable.
SPI, or Serial Peripheral Interface, provides
faster communications as it separates clock and
data lines, along with a select line to choose the
device you wish to talk to.
I2C, or Inter-Integrated Circuit, is a protocol
intended to allow multiple “slave” digital
integrated circuits (“chips”) to communicate
with one or more “master” chips. Like the Serial
Peripheral Interface (SPI), it is only intended for
short distance communications within a
single device.
USB 2.0 provides an easy way for Digi XBee3
Cellular to be configured as a network device in
most operating systems.
CONCLUSION
When considering embedded cellular connectivity,
be sure to consider all of the additional
components and work involved in bringing your
design to fruition. If time to market and ease of
use are vital to your project, be sure to evaluate
the Digi XBee3 Cellular development kit, which
includes a Digi XBee3 end-device-certified modem,
a development board, a pre-activated SIM, a live
data plan with six months of free data service, and
the antennas and accessories needed to get your
cellular device up and running in minutes.
FOR MORE ON DIGI XBEE3 CELLULAR
PLEASE VISIT www.digi.com/xbeecellular
Contact a Digi expert and get started today
PH: 877-912-3444
www.digi.com
Digi International
9350 Excelsior Blvd.
Suite 700
Hopkins, MN 55343
Digi International - Japan
+81-3-5428-0261
Digi International - Singapore
+65-6213-5380
Digi International - China
+88-21-5049-2199
Digi International - Germany
+49-89-540-428-0
© 1996-2018 Digi International Inc. All rights reserved. 91004272 A2/1118
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