Qualcomm Developer Network November Developer of the Month is Tony Tang from Aquila Solutions, based in Suzhou, China.
Aquila is focused on end to end solutions for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and Cellular based IoT gateways, modules for the service providers, smart homes, consumer electronics, connected cars and industrial applications.
How was Aquila Solutions started?
Aquila was founded in August 2010 to develop solutions for the growing Internet of Things. We are focused on intelligent terminals and access products based on 4G-LTE for the power and energy industry. We currently employ over 90 employees, most of which are development engineers.
Aquila has 10 patents and we want to continue providing advanced technology as well as reliable, high-quality personalized products and services for power system, energy and other industries. We see ourselves becoming the vanguard of the wireless Internet of Things industry.
How are you using the CSR1010D Bluetooth module?
We are using the CSR1010D Bluetooth module in our high temperature applications. This was a challenging project that required us to re-design the module to withstand extreme temperature ranges (-40C to 125C) for lighting applications. This project required the implementation of a good test methodology and our Qualcomm colleague, Rick Walker, and Liem Ly helped us overcome many logistical issues. From getting the right SDK and learning materials to travelling to our Nanjing and Shanghai office to work face to face Qualcomm went the extra mile. Final testing is a very rigid process that requires continuous testing for an entire month. Due to limited automation we needed to change the setup every 8 hours without a single mistake. Our engineer, Meng Wang, did this and lived in a nearby hotel. When the high temperature Bluetooth module finally passed all of the tests we knew that our wide range temperature Bluetooth module made us stand out in the industry.
What is your experience with the QCA4020 and QCA4024?
We are developing the smart IoT hub based on Qualcomm’s new System-on-Chips (SoCs), the QCA4020 and QCA4024. The tri-mode SoC QCA4020 integrates Bluetooth Low Energy 5, Dual-band Wi-Fi, and 802.15.4-based technologies, including ZigBee and Thread. The QCA4024 integrates Bluetooth Low Energy 5 and 802.15.4. Both of these SoCs deliver advanced features from the Qualcomm Network IoT Connectivity Platform.
This is a very important project that we kicked off with the Qualcomm team in end of August 2017, under extremely tight schedules. My team worked non-stop on the architecture design for several weeks. We even had daily video conferences with the Qualcomm team to help us debug the hardware.
Ed and Tarun from Qualcomm helped to coordinate the global needed resources to support us quickly and effectively. We worked with Qualcomm in San Jose, San Diego, UK, Taiwan and Shanghai office, getting support from marketing, engineering, FAE, and the logistics teams. We received support from Qualcomm at all hours of the day on weekends, and even vacations!
We were thrilled when we saw the HUB working, and we were able to finish the demo in time to be shown at this year’s CES. It was a fun and a very precious opportunity to work with Qualcomm colleagues shoulder to shoulder for 4 months. We will continue to work on this platform and launch our products shortly.
Where do you see Bluetooth technology in 10 years?
We believe that BLE will be the dominant technology for connecting devices in both our work and personal lives. It will be found in smart homes, health, and industry.