Nordic Semiconductor has announced its new LE Audio Evaluation Platform in partnership with Packetcraft. The LE Audio solution demonstrates the benefits of LE Audio and is designed to support the new LE audio specifications that are expected to be released by the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) during the first half of 2020.

Current Bluetooth wireless audio solutions employ classic Bluetooth technology, but LE Audio introduces a new high-quality wireless audio solution based on Bluetooth LE radios. LE Audio promises lower power consumption than classic Bluetooth audio, extending battery life, bringing better audio quality and enabling the development of devices capable of both wireless data transfer and audio streaming. The technology also supports audio sharing.

The LE Audio Evaluation Platform is designed to operate in either source (for example, audio source, voice call headset source, and peer-to-peer call) or sink (audio playback, headset playback); a pair of devices is required to complete an LE Audio link. Nordic’s LE Audio Evaluation Platform incorporates an acoustic connector that can accommodate up to six microphones or two speakers, a 3.5mm headset jack, a 3.5mm source jack, and a USB connector for charging, debug (using Nordic development tools), and acoustic tuning (using the Cirrus Logic WISCE platform). When wirelessly streaming audio from a source device to wireless (sink) earbuds, the LE Audio Evaluation Platform extends battery life by around 40 per cent. 

“Classic Bluetooth audio provides a satisfactory wireless sound solution, but LE Audio offers significant enhancements. It is destined to be an exciting new sector and Nordic plans to play a key role through the supply of leading LE Audio solutions,” says Kjetil Holstad, director of product management at Nordic Semiconductor. “The launch of the LE Audio evaluation platform is the first step in this journey.”

For more information on Nordic’s LE Audio Platform, click here.