STMicroelectronics recently launched a new generation of smart reset chips, which are designed to provide a safe, convenient and intuitive means of resetting frozen gadgets, such as mobile phones, media players, and other portable consumer devices.
Traditionally, when electronic devices freeze or lock up, users would either try to remove the battery or find an appropriate tool to press the dedicated reset button placed in a hole that is often difficult to access. Smart resets extend the functional capability of the existing buttons so that users can simply re-set their frozen device with a long push of one or two buttons simultaneously, depending on the device configuration. With the increasing popularity of touch-screen devices, smart resets remove the need for extra buttons, saving space and cost for the equipment manufacturers, and significantly increasing convenience for the user.
Effective prevention of accidental resets is secured with the STM6524, ST's newest dual-assert smart reset IC. Its two inputs connect to a selected pair of buttons on an electronic gadget. When these buttons are held down simultaneously for a manufacturer-specified time, the IC sends a reset signal to the main processor. The combination of two inputs and programmable delay time effectively prevents accidental resets. ST is also introducing a new single-assert smart reset IC, the STM6519, which targets single-button electronic devices like tablets and e-readers, with a similar programmable delay reset.
The new generation of ST's smart reset IC offers several improvements over existing solutions: in addition to a smaller package size, the new devices implement a customizable extended input delay time, from 0.5 to 10 seconds, which increases flexibility and enables manufacturers to distinguish their products through specific user-interface settings. The new smart resets also integrate a dedicated test mode, which improves device testability and slashes test costs.
Pricing: The STM6519 and STM6524 cost $0.242 and $0.338 respectively, in quantities of 1,000 pieces.
Availability: In volume.