Harry Potter Kano Coding Kit employs nRF52832 to wirelessly connect magic wand with app

Kano, Harry Potter, gaming

Kano’s ‘Harry Potter Kano Coding Kit’ employs Nordic’s nRF52832 SoC to wirelessly connect ‘magic’ wand with app where users can access coding challenges and creations

Nordic Semiconductor today announces that Kano, a London, U.K.-based educational technology company, has selected Nordic’s nRF52832 Bluetooth® Low Energy (Bluetooth LE) System-on-Chip (SoC) to provide the wireless connectivity for its ‘Harry Potter (TM & © Warner Bros) Kano Coding Kit’, a Bluetooth LE do-it-youself (DIY) wand that helps people of all ages learn how to code.

The Harry Potter Kano Coding Kit includes a multi-platform Kano app (iOS/Android/Windows/MacOS) that lets makers of all ages follow 70 step-by-step coding challenges using intuitive coding ‘blocks’ and a JavaScript inspector. Once the wand is paired with a Bluetooth 4.0 (and later) tablet, laptop or desktop computer, makers of all ages can bring their coding creations to life, inspired by the ‘Wizarding World’. 

The wand employs a nine-degrees-of-freedom (9DoF) inertial measurement unit (IMU)—including a 3-axis accelerometer, 3-axis gyroscope, and 3-axis magnetometer—that tracks the wand’s movement, speed, and direction of use. The Nordic SoC’s powerful Arm® Cortex® M4F processor manages the raw sensor data and, using Bluetooth LE wireless connectivity, relays the data to the user’s device. From the Kano app hosted on the device can see their wand movements brought to life on-screen, for example, moving floating feathers, growing pumpkins, or throwing flames.
Thanks to Nordic’s SoftDevice we were able to implement a seamless and rapid connection between the kit’s hardware and the app
Ricardo Luz, Kano
Nordic’s nRF52832 multiprotocol SoC combines the 64MHz, Arm Cortex M4F processor with a 2.4GHz multiprotocol radio (supporting Bluetooth 5, ANT™, and proprietary 2.4GHz RF protocol software) featuring -96-dB RX sensitivity, with 512kB Flash memory and 64kB RAM. The SoC is supplied with Nordic’s S132 SoftDevice, supporting clear separation between RF protocol software and Kano’s unique application code, which along with the availability of Nordic’s Software Development Kit (SDK) and documented example code, ensured Kano developers enjoyed a smooth and simple process getting prototypes up and running. 
The nRF52832 uses an S132 SoftDevice which is a Bluetooth 5-certifed RF software protocol stack for building advanced Bluetooth LE applications. The SoftDevice features Central, Peripheral, Broadcaster, and Observer Bluetooth LE roles, supports up to twenty connections, and enables concurrent role operation.
“A positive user experience of the Harry Potter Kano Coding Kit relies on the ability to achieve a ‘first time, every time’ connection between the hardware and the Kano App,” explains Ricardo Luz, Senior Technical Product Manager at Kano. “We wanted to bypass a complex initial set-up, and thanks to Nordic’s SoftDevice we were able to implement a seamless and rapid connection between the kit’s hardware and the app.
“A key aspect of our decision to use the nRF52832 SoC was the great development support from Nordic’s DevZone. This support enabled our team to test and iterate very quickly, allowing us to progress quickly.”