For years We've seen all sorts of microcontroller-friendly WiFi modules but none of them were really Adafruit-worthy. Either they were too slow, or too difficult to use, or required signing an NDA, or had limited functionality, or too expensive, or too large. So Adafruit shied away from carrying any general purpose microcontroller-friendly WiFi boards.
The CC3000 hits that sweet spot of usability, price and capability. It uses SPI for communication (not UART!) so you can push data as fast as you want or as slow as you want. It has a proper interrupt system with IRQ pin so you can have asynchronous connections. It supports 802.11b/g, open/WEP/WPA/WPA2 security, TKIP & AES. A built in TCP/IP stack with a "BSD socket" interface. TCP and UDP in both client and server mode, up to 4 concurrent sockets. It does not support "AP" mode, it can connect to an access point but it cannot be an access point.
Adafruit wrapped this little silver module in a tidy breakout board. It has an onboard 3.3V regulator that can handle the 350mA peak current, and a level shifter to allow 3 or 5V logic level. This version of the CC3000 breakout does not have an onboard antenna - instead Adafruit placed a standard uFL connector so that an external 2.4GHz antenna can be used. You will need to purchase a uFL to RP-SMA adapter cable and a 2.4GHZ 'WiFi' antenna to use! See below for these items. This option can give you better range and makes it easier to enclose in a box. Adafruit use the same route and layout as TI's eval board, however, this module is no longer automatically FCC certified when an external antenna is used.
Each order comes with one fully assembled and tested breakout and a small stick of header you can use to solder in and plug into a breadboard. Adafruit don't have a detailed tutorial yet but to get you started, Adafruit have got a fully working Arduino library that is based off of TI's codebase but adapted for use with the AVR. We also have example code showing how to scan the SSID's, connect to your access point and run DHCP, do a DNS lookup to IP address, ping a site and connect to a remote TCP socket such as a website and print out the page.
Please note the hardware is good, but the library code does not yet support all of the CC3000's functionality. SSID scanning, connection, DHCP, DNS lookup, ping, and UDP/TCP client connections (eg connect to a website and grab data) all work and are tested with example code. UDP/TCP server connections are not supported yet! As Adafruit try to complete the functionality, check or subscribe to the github repo for instant updates. For now we suggest this module and codebase for people with some programming and microcontroller experience.
For use with Arduino Uno & Mega only at this time - we'll try to get the code ported to the Leonardo/Due at some point but no ETA. To wire it up: Connect Vin to 5V and Ground to common ground. SCLK connects to your Arduino's hardware SPI Clock pin, MOSI to the SPI MOSI pin, MISO to the SPI MISO pin, CS to digital #10, VBEN to digital #5, and IRQ to digital #3
- Dimensions: 26.22mm / 1.03" x 40.45mm / 1.59" x 2.95mm / 0.11"
- Weight: 3.46g
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