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New Microchip PIC10 - the World's SMALLEST Microcontroller!

By Eric Lawson, Microchip / Edited by Bill Giovino, Microcontroller.com
Jun 1, 2004 - 3:18:00 PM

 
Microchip has introduced the 8-bit, 6-PIN PIC10F microcontroller, starting at $0.49 each for 10K quantities.
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CHANDLER, Ariz., June 1, 2004 [NASDAQ:  MCHP] — Microchip Technology Inc., a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, today announced the world’s smallest microcontrollers — in 6-pin packages — packing the high performance of the Microchip PIC microcontroller architecture into the ultra-small form factor of a SOT-23 package for highly space-constrained and extremely low-cost applications.  These revolutionary 6-pin Flash devices provide an ideal solution for many markets and uses not typically served by microcontrollers today, including “electronic glue” to enable easy bug fixes for ASIC and printed circuit board (PCB) designs, and to replace standard logic and timing components or traditional mechanical timers and switches.

The new Microchip's PIC10 6-pin microcontroller product line extends the 8-pin Microchip PIC12 family. Both products share the same 12-bit core, and are fabbed using Microchip's 0.40µ 3LM CMOS process.

“Microchip continues to push the limits of the 8-bit microcontroller, creating a new breed of ultra-small Flash devices that are opening the door to non-traditional uses for the PIC microcontroller,” said Steve Drehobl, Vice President of Microchip’s Standard Microcontroller and Technology Division.  “The 6-pin devices provide a cost-effective replacement for many discrete logic or mechanical functions, substantially reducing component count and board space while giving engineers additional design flexibility.”

Microchip PIC10F Block Diagram
Microchip PIC10F Block Diagram

PIC10F Device Overview
The PIC10F 8-bit Flash microcontroller family debuts with four members (PIC10F200, PIC10F202, PIC10F204 and PIC10F206) that offer:

  • Only six pins
  • PIC12 core
  • 256 to 512 instructions (x12-bit program words) of Flash program memory
  • 16 bytes to 24 bytes of data RAM memory
  • 2.0 to 5.5-volts operating voltage
  • 4 MHz internal oscillator, ±2% accuracy over voltage and 0º to +70ºC
  • 33 instructions
  • two stack levels
  • 25 milliAmp source/sink current IO
  • low power (100 nanoAmp) sleep current
  • One 8-bit timer,
  • watchdog timer
  • In Circuit Serial Programming™ (ICSP™)
  • Power-on reset
  • Power-saving sleep mode
  • Analog comparator module (PIC10F204 and PIC10F206 only) . 

With only six pins, they are extremely easy to use and have a short learning curve for anyone not experienced in designing with microcontrollers.

Through ICSP technology, Microchip’s 6-pin devices can be programmed after placement on a circuit board.  ICSP technology enables field-upgrades, system calibration during manufacturing and the addition of unique identification codes to the system.

Enabling New Applications for Microcontrollers
While the PIC10F family is ideal for any spaced-constrained application requiring low pin-count microcontrollers, the combination of small form factor, high performance and extremely low cost is creating new applications not traditionally served by microcontrollers:

  • “Electronic Glue”:  Discovering a bug in an ASIC or a PCB can have devastating consequences for the design.  A revision to the silicon or a complete board change may be required, creating substantial time-to-market delays and potential scrappage costs.  Often times, the design issue is simple and can be accommodated by changing the functionality of a single signal using a small, low-cost microcontroller.  The development time for a microcontroller-based system is significantly faster and easier than designing an entirely new ASIC or PCB.  By including the low-cost PIC10F 6-pin devices in a PCB design from the start, bugs, late changes and other stopgaps can be implemented with ease and little expense for ASICs, the board itself and for a number of other devices on the PCB.
    Logic Control:  Traditional standard logic and timing components, such as delays, smart gates, signal conditioning, simple state machines, encoders/decoders, I/O expanders and small peripheral logic functions can now be cost effectively integrated into a 6-pin microcontroller.  The advantages include:  eliminating components (reducing board space and cost), allowing the implementation of more complex solutions by using firmware to implement state machines, and enabling designers to change the functionality on the PCB without having to replace the actual board.
  • Waveform Generation:  As with replacing standard logic devices, a PIC10F microcontroller can take the place of traditional 555 timers, pulse-width modulators (PWMs), remote control encoders, pulse generation, programmable frequency source, resistor-programmable oscillators and much more.
  • “Mechatronics”/Mechanical Functions:  The PIC10F devices are an ideal solution to replace traditional mechanical functions, such as smart switches, mode selectors, remote I/Os, timers, LED flashers, and any other form of mechanical timers and switches.  A microcontroller solution in general can add significantly more functionality than a mechanical-based device.
  • 4-bit Microcontrollers:  As many 4-bit microcontrollers tend to be in larger packages, the 6-pin SOT-23 microcontroller provides a much smaller solution that is higher in performance with respect to both MIPS and mathematical calculations.  Additionally, writing software code for an 8-bit microcontroller is much easier than with 4-bit devices, in many cases.  In terms of cost effectiveness, the PIC10F devices are priced at or below current 4-bit microcontroller cost baselines.
    Intelligent Disposable Electronics:  Given their small form factor and low cost, the PIC10F are ideal for many emerging “disposable” applications that incorporate electronics intelligence, like property identification.  This includes a growing number of medical equipment products such as pregnancy testers, dialysis monitoring (blood sugar), drug testers and much more.

Tools, Availability and Pricing
The PIC10F family is supported by Microchip’s world-class development tools, including the MPLAB® In-Circuit Debugger (ICD2) development tool.  The MPLAB ICD2 is a powerful, low-cost run-time tool that offers cost-effective in-circuit Flash programming and debugging from the graphical user interface of the free MPLAB Integrated Development Environment (IDE) software.  This enables a designer to develop and debug source code by watching variables, single-stepping and setting break points.  Running at full speed enables hardware tests in real-time.

The PIC10F200, PIC10F202, PIC10F204 and PIC10F206 are offered in 6-pin SOT-23 packages.  Samples are available today, and volume production for all four microcontrollers is expected by August.  In 10k quantities, the PIC10F200 is $0.49 each, the PIC10F202 and PIC10F204 are both $0.57 each, and the PIC10F206 is $0.65 each.  For additional information, contact any Microchip sales representative or authorized worldwide distributor, or visit Microchip’s Web site at www.microchip.com/pic10f.

About Microchip Technology
Microchip Technology Inc. (NASDAQ:  MCHP) is a leading provider of microcontroller and analog semiconductors, providing low-risk product development, lower total system cost and faster time to market for thousands of diverse customer applications worldwide. Headquartered in Chandler, Arizona, Microchip offers outstanding technical support along with dependable delivery and quality.

 

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New Microchip PIC10 - the World's SMALLEST Microcontroller!

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Product data and specifications in this article are the responsibility of the manufacturer. No warrenty is expressed or implied as to the accuracy of manufacturer-supplied data. So there.
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