Texas Instruments premiered its first module platform housing the WiLink 6.0 (WL1271) single-chip, wireless combo solution with TI’s open source, Linux-based OpenLink drivers. The OpenLink drivers are built on the community-validated mac80211 Wi-Fi driver and BlueZ Bluetooth protocol stack. The first in a series of such open source platforms from TI, the new WiLink 6.0 OpenLink platform is pre-integrated with TI’s AM18x Sitara ARM microprocessors (MPUs). This enables customers developing industrial or point-of-service applications on cost-effective ARM MPUs to easily introduce reliable, low-power Wi-Fi and Bluetooth wireless technologies.
This release also signifies the first time TI’s customers can easily repurpose Sitara ARM MPU-based designs as Wi-Fi access points via the new WiLink 6.0 OpenLink platform. OpenLink technology offers mobile-grade, battery-optimized Wi-Fi connectivity supporting native Linux designs, giving customers tested wireless technologies that can be easily re-integrated into designs as they migrate from one kernel version to the next. Additionally, TI’s mac80211 Wi-Fi driver is optimized to maximize system level throughput.
As a result, battery-friendly customer products built on Sitara ARM MPUs can serve as a mobile Wi-Fi gateway or support peer-to-peer file transfers with other Wi-Fi enabled devices. These capabilities eliminate the need for external access points and create new opportunities for unique use cases depending on mobile, self-networking devices.
The quick-start experience and other key features The AM18x Sitara ARM EVM + WL1271 Development Kit is the latest version of TI’s original AM18x Sitara ARM EVM and includes elements that create a unique, quick-start experience right out of the box. Meaning a user can be up and running with a demo application in 30 minutes or less.
Other key features include:
OpenLink™ open source drivers (Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technologies)
• Native Linux connectivity solutions
• Simplified re-integration with Linux kernel upgrades
• Peer-tested technologies
Predefined, validated hardware interfaces and software functionality
• Minimized risk and design trade-off analysis
WPA supplicant, hostapd, BlueZ Stack, Open Obex software profiles
• Inclusion of all components required for end-to-end connectivity functionality
• First-time availability of soft access point via AM18x Sitara ARM EVM
Integrated system components (all firmware, low-level drivers and applications)
• Reduced engineering costs, faster time-to-market
Optimized system-level power consumption and throughput
• Lower power, higher throughput in complex system use cases
Robust TI E2E community and third party support
• Innovation through collaboration
• Faster time-to-market
The production-ready WiLink 6.0 (WL1271) OpenLink module is packaged as a daughter card and bundled in the AM18x Sitara ARM EVM + WL1271 Development Kit, priced at $1,150.00.
For customers already working on an AM18x Sitara ARM EVM, the standalone daughter card is available for $249. [Note: The WiLink 6.0 OpenLink daughter card is compatible with all existing AM18x Sitara ARM EVMs, except the AM1810 Sitara ARM MPU.]
Find out more about TI's wireless connectivity solutions
• TI’s OpenLink software development kit: www.ti.com/openlink-sdk 
• TI’s OpenLink community site: http://openlink.org 
• TI's WiLink 6.0 solution (WL1271): www.ti.com/wilink6 
• TI’s AM1808 Sitara ARM MPU: www.ti.com/am1808 
• TI's wireless connectivity solutions: www.ti.com/wirelessconnectivity 
• TI's wireless connectivity Wiki: www.ti.com/connectivitywiki