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Toshiba Unveils Reference Design For Indoor Proximity Applications Utilizing Bluetooth® Beacon With NFC Functions

January 6, 2015

Design features built-in MPU and custom software implemented in built-in EEPROM

CONSUMER ELECTRONICS SHOW (CES), LAS VEGAS, — Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. (TAEC)*,a committed leader that collaborates with technology companies to create breakthrough designs, today announced a complete reference model for indoor proximity applications, or beacons, which use Bluetooth® Low Energy (BLE) to communicate signals detectible by smart devices. The TC35670 reference system comprises an ultra-low-power BLE component, a best-in-class NFC Type 3 Tag1 and complete system software. TAEC will demonstrate the beacon reference design this week at CES 2015 in Las Vegas, Nevada.

BLE beacon applications are rapidly growing in popularity due to their low power requirements and their suitability for a variety of applications, such as indoor positioning, mobile wallet and couponing, and digital signage. According to Research & Markets2, the overall indoor location market, including beacons, is estimated to grow from $597 million in 2014 to $3.9 billion by 2019, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 46 percent.

"Beacons represent a valuable opportunity for commercial locations to connect with consumers in a variety of settings, such as retail shopping environments or through products used in the home, such as high-function remote controls," said Deepak Mithani, senior director, Mixed-Signal Business Unit, System LSI Group at TAEC. "This reference design gives developers a leading-edge tool to explore the full range of possibilities for beacons using the combination of BLE and NFC technologies."

Toshiba's TC35670 reference model enables devices to remain in nearly zero power standby, with wakeup mode being engaged either by the built-in microprocessor's 6-axis sensor or by a reader coming into proximity with the NFC Tag subsystem. Custom software is implemented in the built-in 512Kbit EEPROM, enabling a high degree of configurability, such as modifying Bluetooth parameters (e.g., advertising interval, transmit power, beacon ID3) from the NFC tag.

Housed in a 75mm x 35mm x 12mm case, the reference model also includes the BLE RF block and NFC Tag analog and logic blocks; BLE and NFC antennas; UART, I2C, SPI, PWM, GPIO and JTAG interface blocks; SRAM and MROM blocks; and ADC and DC-DC converters. Power is supplied by a CR2032 coin battery.

The launch of the Toshiba TC35670 reference model closely follows the announcement last month of the TC35670FTG dual-capability IC that supports both Bluetooth LE communications and NFC Tag functions.


Samples of the TC35670 reference model are available now, with mass production set to begin later this month.

*About TAEC

Through proven commitment, lasting relationships and advanced, reliable electronic components, Toshiba enables its customers to create market-leading designs. Toshiba is the heartbeat within product breakthroughs from OEMs, ODMs, CMs, VARs, distributors and fabless chip companies worldwide. A committed electronic components leader, Toshiba designs and manufactures high-quality flash memory-based storage solutions, solid state drives (SSDs), hard disk drives (HDDs), solid state hybrid drives (SSHDs), discrete devices, custom SoCs/ASICs, imaging products, microcontrollers, wireless components, mobile peripheral devices, advanced materials and medical tubes that make possible today's leading smartphones, tablets, cameras, medical devices, automotive electronics, industrial applications, enterprise solutions and more.

Toshiba America Electronic Components, Inc. is an independent operating company owned by Toshiba America, Inc., a subsidiary of Toshiba Corporation, Japan's largest semiconductor manufacturer and the world's sixth largest semiconductor manufacturer (Gartner, 2013 Worldwide Semiconductor Revenue, April 2014). Founded in Tokyo in 1875, Toshiba is at the heart of a global network of over 590 consolidated companies employing over 200,000 people worldwide. Visit Toshiba's web site at

1Produced under license of Sony Corporation's FeliCa™ Lite-S technology
2"Indoor Location Market by Positioning Systems, Maps and Navigation - Worldwide Market Forecasts and Analysis (2014 - 2019)," August 2014
3Also known as UUID - universally unique identifier

Bluetooth, Bluetooth Smart and Bluetooth Smart Ready are registered trademarks owned by the Bluetooth SIG; Toshiba uses them under license.


Information in this press release, including product pricing and specifications, content of services and contact information, is current and believed to be accurate on the date of the announcement, but is subject to change without prior notice.

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