SparkFun's DA16200 Thing Plus Packs an Ultra-Low-Power Wi-Fi Module Onto a Compact Dev Board

With a current draw as low as 0.2µA, this ultra-low-power Wi-Fi board aims to deliver year-plus battery life.

SparkFun has launched a new board, which aims to offer low-power Wi-Fi connectivity for the Internet of Things, while tying in to the company's popular Thing Plus and Qwiic ecosystems: the SparkFun DA16200 Thing Plus.

"This new Wi-Fi development platform is sure to impress with its ultra-low power mode and Feather-compatible form factor," claims SparkFun's Chris McCarty of the company's latest launch. "The SparkFun DA16200 Thing Plus utilizes a highly integrated ultra-low power Wi-Fi system on chip (SoC) from Dialog [Semiconductor] that allows users to develop Wi-Fi and IoT solutions."

SparkFun's latest Thing Plus takes aim at always-on Wi-Fi IoT connectivity with a Dialog DA16200 at its heart. (📹: SparkFun)

That SoC, the Dialog DA16200, launched with a bold claim: "[It's] the world's first Wi-Fi SoC to deliver year-plus battery life for always-connected Wi-Fi IoT devices," Dialog claimed at the time. Built around an Arm Cortex-M4F microcontroller core, the chip includes a 2.4GHz 802.11n 1×1 radio module designed for ultra-low power draw, along with 512kB of static RAM (SRAM), a controller for off-chip flash memory, a real-time clock, eMMC and SD Host support, and encryption accelerators for AES and TLS workloads.

Using a modular version of the SoC with on-board antenna, SparkFun's Thing Plus breaks out 16 general-purpose input/output (GPIO) pins with up to four 12-bit analog-to-digital converter (ADC) channels, two UARTs, one SPI bus, and one I2C bus. Alongside breadboard-friendly unpopulated through-hole pin headers are a four-pin Qwiic connector and a two-pin JST connector for an optional lithium-polymer battery, which can be charged from the on-board USB Type-C port.

"This unique Thing Plus model is ideal for your next IoT project," SparkFun claims, "thanks partly to the numerous sleep modes that allow you to take advantage of current draws as low as 0.2-3.5µA on the Wi-Fi module. The DA16200's system on a chip (SoC) has full offload capabilities to run the entire networking OS and TCP/IP stack on the chip; therefore, an external network processor, CPU, or microcontroller is not required."

The SparkFun DA16200 Thing Plus is now available on the company's web store, priced at $34.95 before volume discounts; its pinout makes it compatible with carriers, shields, and other accessories designed for Thing Plus and Feather boards, but with the proviso that the board uses 3.3V logic and is not 5V-safe.

Gareth Halfacree
Freelance journalist, technical author, hacker, tinkerer, erstwhile sysadmin. For hire:
Latest articles
Sponsored articles
Related articles
Latest articles
Read more
Related articles