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  • Writer's picturePouya Neshagar

(Hardware Review) SPWF01Sx, WiFi module from ST-Microelectronic

SPWF01Sx, it’s a WiFi module by ST-Microelectronic, targeted for the IoT systems. In this review, we will take a close look and the hardware and will examine the company’s first attempt in WiFi market.


SPWF01Sx, is an off the shelf module, consist of a WiFi chipset; a stm32 microcontroller, antenna and extensive GPIO. In one sense, it’s the whole in one package, a plug-and-play standalone WiFi product that can be easily integrated into your IoT and M2M solutions. It will connect to the host micro-controller via USART and can controlled by set of AT commands provided on documentation. As result, working and integrating the SPWF01Sx is pretty straightforward and easy.

On the other hand, it only supports 802.11 b/g/n in 2.45Ghz. So, if you need 5Ghz, then this is not a choice for you. Also, ease of use and AT commands come with a cost of the module being a bit slow and it being based on USART, slower response time. Power consumption is fairly good and going to sleep mode and waking up needs a bit of work but can be easily achieved.

Configuring the module to connect to the nearby WiFi-access point is also relatively easy. SPWF01Sx, other than normal mode, also operate in AP mode meaning you can connect to the module with your smartphone or tablet to configure the SSID and PWD. Since it acts as a webserver in AP mode, you are also able to create your own html page, specific for your product (you need to have the module in its latest firmware, so you can have all the features available).

Just keep in mind, when you are using the module, the Firmware of the module should be at least the 2015 version. In earlier versions, the webserver would be still ON even after you put the module in normal operation mode and that would cause you some security problem.

Firmware version of 2016 and 2017 are relatively faster that the older firmware, especially when the modules is in normal mode and tries to connect to the WiFi access point nearby. Therefore, it is highly recommended to upgrade to the lasted one. Doing FOTA is easy and as all ST product, plenty of documentation is available.

Many IoT and M2M projects involves working with HTTP for the most part. Sending an http request or http post is as easy as one line of AT command. It also supports TLS/SSL, so if you need extra security in your design, it’s there. But if your target is something other than just HTTP related commands, I recommend take a look at other Wifi products on the market.

Concluding Thoughts:

It’s a great product to develop a IoT and M2M application with WiFI and its easy integration, makes time to market of your solution relatively short. It’s a ‘go to’ product when you are prototyping. AT commands makes it easy to operate and sending http request it’s as easy as one line of code. If you expect only HTTP functionality for your WiFi product, then SPWF01Sx, is an option worth considering for your production as well.

Hope you find this article helpful. As always, remember asking better questions, will help you to find better answers.


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