Getting started with the nRF52840 Development Kit

Development kit for the Nordic nRF52840 System-on-Chip (Soc)

Congratulations on getting the nRF52840 DK!


On this page we'll show you how to connect and power up your nRF52840 DK, and what to expect when you do so.
This will take about 20 minutes.


NB! You need a reasonably current Windows PC to perform the following.


Your nRF52840 DK must be running firmware version 1.1.0 or later. Kits with hardware revision 1.1.0 or later, are shipped with this firmware.
If step 5 below fails, click here to download version 1.1.0 firmware, and continue from step 7 to program the new firmware into your nRF52840 DK.


Connect and test the nRF52840 DK


  1. What's included with the kit: The nRF52840 DK board itself, and a flex NFC antenna (Pic.1).
  2. Connect the NFC antenna to the board. The connector is marked "NFC", and located on the edge of the board near the 4 buttons (Pic.2).
  3. Use a micro USB 2.0 cable to connect the nRF52840 DK to one of your PC's USB host ports. This provides power to the board, and supports target programming.
  4. Flip the power switch to "on". Find it near the micro USB connector (Pic.3). A popup may appear. Ignore it for now.
  5. Confirm that LED 1 has started pulsating (Pic.4).
  6. Use the buttons SW1 to SW4 to control which LED is pulsating.
  7. Open a Windows file explorer. Confirm that the nRF52840 DK has appeared as a removable drive named "JLINK" (Pic.6). This allows you to program the onboard chip. You'll do this under "how to program the optional demos into your nRF52840 DK" below.
  8. Take out your smart phone and enable NFC, if available. If you don't know how to do this, consult the phone manual or Google "<your phone> NFC enable".


  1. nRF52840 Preview DK - Contents
    Connecting antenna
    Power on
    LED pulsate
    Touch buttons
    Picture 6 - JLINK connected and enumerated
    NFC enabled, connecting
  2. Once NFC is enabled, hold your phone close to the nRF52840 DK (Pic.7).
  3. Your phone will prompt you to open a URL. Please allow this. Your smart phone browser will then open this web page! This will also make it easier for you to install the nRF Toolbox mobile app. See below.


Download optional demos for your nRF52840 DK


Both the optional demos below interact with the nRF Toolbox mobile app.
Once nRF Toolbox is installed on your phone, download the optional demo programs below to interact with the nRF52DK from your smart phone.


  • Heart rate monitor - fake EKG values are broadcasted by the nRF52840 DK. The nRF Toolbox app displays the curve.
  • Proximity demo - activate LEDs on the nRF52840 DK using the nRF Toolbox mobile app.


Get the mobile App for more demo fun


Now it's time to download and install the nRF Toolbox mobile app-available for Android, iOS and Windows Phone. This app is required for the downloadable optional demos.



Click your desired platform above to get to the Nordic Toolbox download page.


Click here to read more about the nRF Toolbox app!


How to program the optional demos into your nRF52840 DK


(Make sure you have installed the nRF Toolbox mobile app before you start. See above right).


  1. Download demo zip files by clicking on the links above.
  2. Unzip and find a hex file and a readme document inside. The document describes how the demo works.
  3. Drag and drop the hex file into the JLINK removable drive mentioned above. The file contains firmware which will be automatically programmed onto the nRF52840 SoC. This happens immediately. The explorer window may close when programming starts. When programming is completed, the unit will be re-detected by Windows.
  4. Follow the instructions in the "readme" document that came with the demo.


Enjoy the demos and your nRF52840 DK!


Click here to go to the infocenter and learn more about nRF52 Series application development.


Click here to go back to the nRF52840 DK product page.