Freescale Semiconductor has announced a new, ultra-thin microcontroller. It’s the latest version of the company’s Kinetis K22 MCU, and it offers 120 MHz of power in a 0.34mm-high hardware package.
In other words, it’s “as thin as a blade of grass,” according to Freescale manager of MCU platforms Steve Tateosian. The company says its tiny scale could offer impactful applications in wearables, consumer electronics, EMV credit cards, and the Internet of Things. Speculating in a press release, Freescale notes that the technology could have profound applications in products such as biometric patches that could measure the glucose levels of diabetic persons.
It’s easy to imagine the IoT applications as well. Since the IoT will comprise myriad devices, many of them are going to be tiny electronic products that are too small for standard microprocessors, and this is where microcontrollers could play a crucial role. Of course, small-scale MCUs are going to be increasingly important in all kinds of areas – wearables, consumer electronics and digital payments included—and as such Freescale appears to be aiming the right product at the right markets.