Espressif Launches Arduino Uno-Like ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO-DevKit Board for Quick Alexa Projects

Offering a speedy start to Alexa-connected device development, the new board borrows the popular Arduino Uno form factor.

Espressif has announced the launch of a new, compact development kit designed around its earlier Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) module, the ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO-DevKit, with which it aims to simplify the development of smart home systems connecting to Amazon's Alexa platform.

Espressif launched its Alexa Connect Kit (ACK) module, the ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO, last year, promising "an easy way for customers to build Alexa-compatible devices without worrying about managing cloud services, writing an Alexa Skill, phone applications or complex device firmware." Built around the EPS32-PICO-V3 system-in-package (SIP), the part includes an Xtensa LX6 dual-core processor, 4MB of SPI flash memory, 2.4GHz 802.11b/g/n Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth with Bluetooth Low Energy support.

Those looking to make use of the module, however, needed to design their own carrier — until now. The ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO-DevKit is, as the name suggests, a development board carrying the ACK module — and it boasts an Arduino Uno-like form factor, making it easy to integrate into prototype projects.

"ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO-DevKit is a result of Espressif’s work with Amazon, which aims at enabling makers to develop device interconnectivity and voice-controlled technologies," says Espressif founder and chief executive Teo Swee Ann of the launch. "What’s more, ESP32-PICO-V3-ZERO-DevKit reduces both the cost and the complexity of building connected devices."

As with the bare module, the development board includes full support for the Amazon Connect Kit (ACK) ecosystem, which allows developers to connect devices to Amazon's Alexa platform at a fixed per-device cost. The ACK firmware comes pre-loaded, making the device ready to run out-of-the-box.

The board is up for sale now, though with a four-week lead time, priced at $70. More information is available on the Epsressif website.

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