Behind the scenes of Electronica 2012 with Energy Micro


One of the biggest electronics shows, Electronica, just ended after four days with more than 72,000 visitors from 78 countries. The Energy Micro team was present and met interested engineers and demonstrated products and applications. Here you can see some of the things that happened during the show.

Day 0 – Arrival and late night preparations

We arrived in Munich one day before the show so we could set up demos, laptops, samples, and make everything ready for our visitors. Though our booth layout was ready with two meeting rooms and four demo stands, the full installation was still on its way. The whole Electronica fair was full of drilling sounds and paint smells until midnight.

Day 1 – Grand opening and real life applications

Early, and before the opening at 9am, we went to the show, and the booth was finally completed. The whole team was ready and enthused to meet visitors, and Andreas made sure everybody knew how to help and respond to visitors’ inquiries effectively.

Rasmus was answering questions on how to develop ultra low power and energy efficient applications. We had product demos available that show how customers use the EFM32 microcontrollers in diving computers, gas monitors, smart meters, medical equipment, and home automation like light switches. The engineers were especially interested in the peripherals, like LESENSE (low energy sensor interface), which helps to reduce battery consumption. We then reminded visitors to take a look at our application notes which can help to develop various applications faster.

Day 2 – Choosing the right ARM microcontroller

Matthias was explaining about the different EFM32 Gecko product lines to visitors. As the product portfolio has more than 240 MCU products, it not always easy to decide which Gecko suits best for their specific application. We just launched a new product selector tool, which helped the designers to compare different product lines (Zero, Tiny, Gecko, Leopard, Giant, and Wonder Gecko) based on the type of ARM Cortex-M processor (M0+, M3, M4F), the size of memories and features options like TFT or USB.

The visitors also had a chance to apply for a free starter kit to really test the EFM32 microcontroller features. The kit enables users to use Advanced Energy Monitoring, real-time energy profiling, light, LC, and touch sensors. In addition to the kit itself, the software support is also important for a complete low energy solution, so Dewald introduced new features in Simplicity Studio to our visitors. The energyAware Profiler, designer tools, and source code libraries are located in one place, Simplicity Studio. All you have to do is to download Simplicity Studio and connect the kit with your laptop.

In addition to MCUs, we will release a family of low power RF transceiver covering multiple frequency bands and supporting both standard and proprietary wireless protocols, and Andreas was handling the EFR demo station.

Once a month, the Energy Micro engineers have a Hack-a-Gecko day where they realize their personal projects with EFM32 microcontrollers. We brought some of the Hack-a-Gecko applications to the Electronica show, and they included remote controls, energy harvesters and pulse oximeters. One of the projects was Pacman which was a boom in the game market back in 1980s. The visitors played Pacman on the Giant Gecko EFM32 development kit at the booth. You can see more Hack-a-Gecko projects on our blog.

Day 3 – Board of Directors and very famous visitors


The Energy Micro board members (From the left: Geir, Dan, Steinar, Torleif, and Daniel) visited our booth to meet the engineering community, the trade press, and to learn and share views on the future of Energy Micro. The board members cheered up the Energy Micro team with positive feedback and future growth plans with expansion of global distribution and new ARM Cortex-M product series.

The Electronica was not all about serious talks and complex information. It also included some fun and entertainment. There were some celebrity look-alikes visiting the booths. Here we had Jack Sparrow from Pirates of the Caribbean who visited our booth and coveted application samples equipped with EFM32 MCUs.

Day 4 – The end is near


The whole week at Electronia 2012 went really fast and we would like to thank all of the visitors who visited the Energy Micro booth, and shared thoughts on products and services. We will do our best to transfer the insight to the world’s most energy friendly microcontrollers and radios.

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