Updated May 10th 2019.
This blog gives a snapshot of the development status of nRF9160 features, performance and qualification leading up to mass production.
The nRF9160 hardware and development kits are now in production and is suitable for full end-to-end sensor to cloud development. We’re still developing features and optimizing performance and will be rolling out sampling and production as follows:
December 12th 2018
April 30th 2019
Firmware images are posted on the product page.
There are three variants of the nRF9160 supporting different radio technologies. Samples are available of nRF9160-SICA and you can buy devices for engineering builds from your distributor. The sampling and production schedules are as follows:
May 31st 2019
Certification status and roadmap is kept up-to-date on nordicsemi.com/9160cert
We had a few things to fix in the silicon, and not all changes have made it into sampled material yet. This does affect active current consumption for example. Please check out the nRF9160 SiP errata for more detail. nRF9160 SiPs where the issues have started shipping.
GSMA keeps a good list of currently available LTE-M and NB-IoT networks globally here:
Most of them have also made it into a nice map here:
You can find the application SDK samples here:
There is also a more complete asset tracker application example here:
Notable components tested and included: MQTT, CoAP, HTTP, secure BSD sockets, peripheral and DK board drivers
Notable todos: LWM2M, Modem DFU
The modem can be traced through the application processor. The easiest way to get the traces out is through UART. The nRF Connect for Desktop has an app for that.
The nRF9160 DK serves as a software development platform, field testing tool and reference design. It is the vehicle for all of our certification testing which makes it valuable as a reference design.
Unfortunately, in versions before 0.8.5, matching components for the on-board GPS antenna on the DK were not optimal and will give poor to no functionality of the GPS. It is recommended to connect an external active GPS antenna to compensate. In order to use this, you will need:
Though we have now made the nRF9160 publicly available for developers, it does not mean that we are done with the power optimizations. The functionality of eDRX and PSM is in place but we still have tuning to do in clock speeds of the different processing elements in the modem, further optimizations of scan algorithms etc. That being said, it already preforms really well on many parameters. Before we transfer the nRF9160 to production, we will release an updated firmware image that shows off the low power features of nRF9160 properly. But we’ll never stop chasing that last uJ of energy saving in the design…
PSM is typically used for applications that can wait 10 minutes or more between each time it connects to the network
After a PSM TAU, the device stays awake in connected mode and idle mode DRX for a while:
DRX/eDRX is typically used for applications that require 10 minutes or lower latency on downlink traffic to the device or send data with that frequency.
The nRF9160 Errata on current affects these numbers adversely due to higher active current:
Good info, thanks.The Application SDK github link 404's. Is it supposed to be live?
It goes live on github on Friday along with the dev tools. We'll make the repos public then. If you order your kit now, they should be live by the time you get it ;-)