Promise of IoT – the next big application: Page 4 of 4

October 27, 2016 // By Harpinder Singh Matharu, Xilinx Inc.
Continuous evolution of mobile broadband networks and related technologies is critical to address the growing demand for connectivity and bandwidth. It is equally important to incorporate capabilities and mechanisms to monetize the network in order to sustain continued investments. Considering currently deployed services, the LTE based mobile broadband consumer market is approaching maturity and saturation from a revenue standpoint. Targeting new applications, use cases, and markets is a must have to set the stage as the industry embarks to prepare for 5G deployment in 2020.

All programmable FPGAs and SoCs offer a good solution to meet the challenging requirements of IoT gateways and IoT test bed platforms to instantiate different radios on a need basis with built-in flexibility to adapt to evolving standards, perform edge compute, and secure links. Figure 2 shows a programmable and flexible IoT gateway conceptual block diagram that can be built using Xilinx 16nm Zynq UltraScale+™ MPSoC platform. The Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ platform has quad-core ARM® Cortex-A53 running up to 1.5 GHz, a dual-core ARM Cortex-R5 real time processing unit, integrated peripherals and connectivity cores, and built in advanced security, safety, and reliability functions. It has rich programmable fabric to host multiple radio technology instances along with backhaul and local storage connectivity. Xilinx baseband, radio, foundation DSP, and connectivity IPs can be leveraged in combination with the rich ARM software ecosystem to build flexible and extensible IoT gateway application development framework. The inherent flexibility and programmability of FPGA fabric allows easy updates to radio implementation independent of the application stack residing on the integrated processors. Standardizing on such platforms, stimulating open source industry standard application development framework and running pilot case studies are essential steps to jump start development and deployment of IoT based new services.

Figure 2: Xilinx Zynq UltraScale+ MPSoC All Programmable platform as an integrated IoT gateway.


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