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Linux-based COMs gain WiFi AP and BLE 4.1 functions

Mar 24, 2015 — by Eric Brown — 1,392 views

Gumstix has updated its wireless enabled, Linux-oriented Overo Storm modules with new “Storm-Y” models that add WiFi access point and BLE 4.1 functions.

Last summer, when Gumstix announced a Storm-P version of its wireless-enabled Overo Storm computer-on-modules, the company said the Storm was its most popular model. Whereas the Storm-P added WiFi Direct support via Wi2Wi’s W2CBW0015 wireless module, the new Storm-Y, which appears to supersede it, goes with a Texas Instruments WiLink 8 module.

Overo Storm-Y with antenna
(click image to enlarge)

The key enhancement here is the addition of WiFi access point support. This enables the Overo COM to serve simultaneously as client and host, “critical for Internet of Things (IoT) gateway applications,” says Gumstix. The WiLink 8 module stays with 802.11b/g/n rather than the newer 802.11ac technology, but boosts Bluetooth to version 4.1 with BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) support. A single antenna connector is also provided,

The Storm-Y modules retain the Overo’s 58 x 17mm dimensions and optimized Yocto Linux build running on TI Cortex-A8 processors clocked at 800MHz to 1GHz. The COMs continue to ship with 512MB RAM, 512MB flash, a microSD slot, and a 27-pin camera connector. Other standard features include dual 70-pin AVX connectors with support for interfaces including, USB OTG, GPIO, GPMC, LCD, ADC, I2C, SPI, UART, and audio I/O.

As before, three versions — Air, Fire, and Iron — are provided for the Storm-Y models, with the following differences and prices:

  • AirStorm-Y — TI Sitara AM3703 — $139
  • FireStorm-Y — TI DM3730 with PowerVR SGX530 GPU and DSP — $159
  • IronStorm-Y — TI DM3730 with PowerVR SGX530 GPU and DSP, plus extended temperature operation — $179

Gumstix recently released an updated Linux distribution for the modules in the form of a Yocto Project 1.7 “Dizzy” image that adds driver support for the WiLink 8. The Overo Storm-Y series COMs are fully compatible with the existing Gumstix Overo expansion boards, says the company.

Further information

The new Overo Storm-Y modules should be available today at the prices listed above, at Gumstix’s online store.

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