CircuitPython 6.0.0 Alpha Brings Lower-Power Sleep, Initial Support for Espressif's ESP32-S2 Range

Now available in alpha, and for stable release once bug-tested, CircuitPython 6.0.0 adds ESP32-S2 support and new low-power sleep features.

Gareth Halfacree
4 years ago β€’ Python on Hardware

The CircuitPython project, built on MicroPython, has reached version 6.0.0 β€” in alpha form, at least β€” with new low-power sleep functionality and initial support for the Espressif ESP32-S2.

"This is the first alpha release of CircuitPython 6.0.0," the project's developers write of the new version of popular microcontroller-targeted CircuitPython. "It is a renumbered version of 5.4.0 because i2cslave module and class have been renamed to i2cperipheral."

The new release may be a renumber, but that doesn't mean renames are its only features: "Feature-wise," the developers continue, "this stable release adds basic lower power support when in time.sleep() and initial ESP32-S2 support."

The latter is a key new feature: Espressif's new ESP32-S2 microcontrollers, its first to feature a core based on the free and open source RISC-V instruction set architecture, have been available for some time but were not previously supported in CircuitPython β€” with noted hardware maker "arturo182" among those working on boards to launch alongside stable support.

Speaking of stability, CircuitPython 6.0.0 should be relatively stable despite its alpha status. The biggest bugs are likely to be found in the ESP32-S2 support and in the new lower-power time.sleep() function - "the lower power work changed time keeping," its developers note, "and may have introduced bugs. Please use 5.3.0 if you need a stable version of CircuitPython."

Full details, and links to download the new release, can be found on Adafruit's CircuitPython GitHub repository.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire: freelance@halfacree.co.uk.
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