New to the Alpha Micro product portfolio is the SARA-U2 series from u-blox. Said to be the industry”s smallest surface mount UMTS/HSPA cellular modems, they are suitable for a wide range of industrial M2M, vehicle and consumer applications. The new SARA product line is available either as a 3G only version, or with 2G fall-back capability.
Applications include connected navigation systems, mobile-internet devices, security and surveillance systems, eCall, fleet management, metering, anti-theft and usage-based insurance systems, and battery driven handheld applications.
“SARA-U2 is the smallest 3G module on the market, allowing the creation of ultra-compact 3G solutions at price points unthinkable before. The 2G fall-back option makes it suitable for systems that must deliver maximum coverage,” said Thomas Nigg, VP Product Marketing at u-blox.
These modules provide efficient and cost-effective high-speed mobile connectivity in an ultra-small 16 x 26 mm LGA form factor. Two of the four variants, the SARA-U260 and SARA-U270, provide GSM/GPRS fallback while SARA-U280 and SARA-U290 are cost-efficient 3G-only variants. The modules are pin-compatible with SARA-G3 GSM/GPRS modules, as well as layout compatible with LISA-C2 CDMA and TOBY-L1 LTE modules to support future-proof 4G designs.
All SARA modules share the exact same form-factor and footprint, and are designed to support u-blox” “Nested Design” philosophy which enables modems to be “hot-swapped” across the entire range of u-blox 2G, 3G and 4G cellular modems.
SARA provides a perfect solution to a wide range of M2M applications requiring UMTS/HSPA, GSM/GPRS, voice and/or data, plus optional Internet suite (embedded TCP/IP, UDP/IP, HTTP and FTP). In-band modem support for eCall and ERA GLONASS vehicle emergency call applications is also provided. Extremely low power consumption makes SARA perfect for battery powered communication applications.
The SARA Land Grid Array (LGA) form factor enables extremely compact designs and supports A-GPS for accelerated positioning used in telematics devices. It also supports u-blox” unique CellLocate® hybrid positioning technology to facilitate advanced location-aware systems requiring indoor positioning.
SARA-U2 UMTS/HSPA module prototypes are available in February 2014; samples are available in April 2014.