New Battery-Charger Chip from STMicroelectronics Reduces Cost and Time-to-Market for Wearable and Portable ApplicationsConsolidates vital features to save board space, as well as design and test time Geneva / 29 Jun 2016
STMicroelectronics has introduced a new battery-charger management chip that vastly improves functional integration without compromising performance and power consumption. The highly integrated STBC02 IC combines all of the most frequently demanded features for energy management in wearable and portable devices, including linear battery charging, a 150 mA Low Drop-Out voltage regulator, two SPDT (Single-Pole/Double-Throw) load switches, a smart reset/watchdog function, and a Protection Circuit Module that protects the battery from damage under fault conditions.
According to independent market researchers IDC, the wearable market reached 78 million units in 2015, with an annual year-over-year growth of 172%. The STBC02 offers the perfect solution for this exciting market, reducing the application footprint and simplifying design, leading to lower cost and faster time-to-market for wearable products across the spectrum of healthcare, fitness, and messaging and socialization applications.
All the STBC02 functions are simply controlled via the SWIRE protocol that requires only one microcontroller I/O pin, while the frugal amount of current drawn from the battery during normal operations enables longer battery life.
Key features of the new device include:
- An integrated Protection Circuit Module allows the device to be used with Li-ion batteries without any other protection chip;
- An integrated power path allows the battery to be charged and the overall system to be powered at the same time;
- Embedded Smart Reset/Watchdog enhances system reliability, with full recoverability in case of software failure;
- Adjustable Vbatt floating voltage allows the use of different Li-ion chemistries and also offers the possibility to implement customized charging strategies;
- 10nA shutdown current, extending shelf battery life;
- On-demand battery surveillance for the system controller.
The STBC02 is available now in volume at a price of US$1.1 for 1,000 units.
 IDC Worldwide Quarterly Wearable Device Tracker, February 23, 2016