USB2GO: A Tiny Android Development Board

March 27, 2014 | 21:36
USB2GO: A Tiny Android Development Board
USB2GO: A Tiny Android Development Board
Open Source USB2GO is a small development board that plugs directly into the micro USB port of your Android smartphone.

The purpose of the USB2GO is to make it easy developers to build hardware gadgets for the Android phone. The device can be used to build a thermometer, a portable oscilloscope or anything else the community comes up with. It's about the size of a USB stick and powered from the phone so no extra batteries are needed.

USB2GO is currently being crowdsourced on Kickstarter in the hope of raising $50.000 to start production. The board is a project of 8Innovations. The two Slovenian guys behind the 8Innovations are R&D engineer Bostjan Mulej and hardware designer Janez Ambrozic. They teamed up with American engineer Kevin Jordan to circumvent Kickstarter's country restrictions.

The developers, both long time open source contributors, will make the entire project -both hardware and software- open source.

USB2Go is an ARM 32-bit Cortex-M3 processor development board. To control the board 8Innovations has developed software for three different levels of expertise. From the Kickstarter site:

For Android developers, we developed USB2Go API for direct control of ARM peripherals. There is no ARM programming knowledge needed and it's really easy to use. You can control all GPIO's, ADC's, PWM, UART, I2C, SPI form our Android API.

For hobbyists, there is a graphical programming tool for simple and quick projects. Just plug it in drag a control on your screen and instantly you can control all ARM peripherals.

For professionals we have great USB API for ARM and Android for easy communication, with examples and template projects for quick start.

The USB2GO is available on the Kickstarter site for a pledge of $29 (early bird) or $34 if those run out. For $99 there is also a full kit reward which includes an Arduino extension and a female version of the USB2GO which can function as a stand-alone device.


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