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Microchip PIC32 Family Reaches New Levels of Performance and Integration

Microchip has announced an addition to its 32-bit MCU line of PIC32 called the PIC32MZ Embedded Connectivity (EC) family.  The PIC32 is based on the MIPS architecture.  The new PIC32MZ is Microchip’s first MCU to feature Imagination’s MIPS microAptiv™ core.

The microAptiv core adds 159 new DSP instructions that enable the execution of DSP algorithms at up to 75% fewer cycles than the PIC32MX families.  Microchip has tripled the performance over its previous generation reaching 330 DMIPS.  The microMIPS instruction set also enables improved code density for the PIC32MZ.

Microchip has integrated a large number of peripherals, mostly to support high speed connectivity: Hi-Speed USB, 10/100 Ethernet MAC, 2 CAN 2.0b modules, 6 UART, 6 SPI / I²S, 5 I²C™ and SQI (Serial Quad Interface).  The SQI supports high-speed interface to external Flash.  Integrated onto the PIC32MZ is up to 2MB of Live-Update Flash.  This is the Flash technology Microchip acquired with SST.

The PIC32MZ targets a broad range of applications which include automation (factory, building and home), consumer audio, automotive, security, power meters and cloud computing. 

Microchip is also offering a crypto engine on some versions for Secure Connectivity applications.  This engine offloads processing from the core and improves overall performance.  There are a total of 24 members of the PIC32MZ family, with more to come.  Availability is set for December 2013, but there are already a large number of early adaptors.  Pricing starts at $6.68 in 10 Ku quantities.

Microchip is offering several development kits, tools and software development tools.  The company announced the MLAB Harmony an integrated software framework for all PIC32 MCUs.  This is an all in one ecosystem.  In addition to Microchip code, there is third party code available through Microchip.

Semico Spin

Microchip has been the leading 8-bit MCU supplier for several years.  The PIC32 addresses the high growth 32-bit MCU segment.  The high growth markets for 32-bit MCUs are automotive and industrial which the PIC32MZ addresses.  The high speed connectivity and security features, as well as the high processing performance, are key elements for the nascent Internet of Things (IoT).  Microchip has been known for its development tools.  The PIC32 ecosystem offers developers the tools to utilize the new PIC32MZ for new applications.

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