Choosing the Right ARM Microcontroller


Have you ever wondered what powers your smart watch, game controller, or dash cam? Inside each of these Internet of Things (IoT) devices, there is a small computer chip embedded called a microcontroller. Microcontrollers are different from PC CPUs in several key ways: they are lower cost, lower speed, lower power consumption, and most importantly, they can provide real-time processing, which is essential for time-critical applications. For example, you wouldn't want your game controller to have high latency when playing a first-person shooter game. 

Microcontrollers are used in a wide variety of IoT devices, including:

Microcontrollers are also used in many other applications, such as:

Design Goal

The goal of a microcontroller is to provide specific functionality at low cost, low area, ultra-low power consumption, and deterministic output with low latency. 

MicroController System Overview

MCU Block Diagram

Block Descriptions

Clock generator: it provides all the clocks with various speed needed for the internal system such as processor, memory, and I/O interfaces.

Popular ARM architectures.

Twp popular types: R class ARM Archiecture and M Class ARM Archiecture

 M Class ARM Archiecture: There are generally 3 M class micro-architectures that iare used namely:

Benefits of M Class ARM Microcontrollers:

R class ARM Archiecture: R class ARM microcontrollers are a family of microcontrollers based on the ARMv7-M architecture. They are designed for embedded applications that require low power consumption and real-time performance. 

Benefits of R Class ARM Microcontrollers:

Comparision between R and M class ARM MCU

R Class ARM Microcontrollers

M Class ARM Microcontrollers

MCU Selection Consieration

Top criteria when selecting a MCU

Popular Vendors and low power series.

Summary and Conclusion

Microcontrollers are small, low-cost, and low-power computers that are used in a wide variety of applications. They have a number of benefits, including real-time data processing, low interrupt latency, onboard memory and storage, and comprehensive system interfaces. 

When selecting a microcontroller, it is important to consider the following factors: cost, power consumption, required peripherals, internal memory (SRAM), internal storage (Flash), DSP and Floating point Unit, processor clock speed, and security.

Some popular vendors of microcontrollers include NXP, STMicroelectronics, and Texas Instruments.