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Espressif Named “Cool Vendor” in IoT 2016 by Gartner

Shanghai, China
May 19, 2016

Espressif is cool for two small reasons: low cost, and a complete Wi-Fi enabled controller on a board about the size of a postage stamp.

Espressif Systems, a fabless IC design company providing low power Wi-Fi and Bluetooth technologies for the Internet of Things (IoT) applications, has been named a "Cool Vendor" based on a report titled "Cool Vendors in IoT Thingification 2016"1 by Gartner, Inc, a global IT research firm.

The report identifies innovative, impactful and intriguing providers in the IoT market. “IoT project leaders can apply maker technologies to build simple, but robust and compelling devices. Ultra low cost Wi-Fi devices enable cloud connectivity with advanced management tools,” according to the report.

Why is Espressif Cool?

Espressif is cool for two small reasons: low cost and small size. The complete Wi-Fi enabled controller results in an IoT platform capable of connecting devices at costs that make almost anything economically possible. ESP8266 includes a complete Wi-Fi stack, controlled through simple commands. Although intended as a WiFi interface, the device has sufficient capacity to run, for example, an Arduino system in parallel.

A key differentiator comes from engagement with the open source community. Espressif has an active community of developers that provide a range of code tools. For example, the ESP8266 chip has an Arduino library, as well as a node.js implementation. Many coding languages have now been ported ESP8266, including Forth, LISP, Apple BASIC, Lua (NodeMCU), Javascript (Smart.JS), Python (MicroPython), and Arduino ESP8266.

Espressif Values

With its aggressively low price point and community support, Espressif is a tough company to compete against. Competition will not be on cost. Instead, Espressif is staying engaged with its developer community, so that good ideas and clever implementations continue to flow back and forth. Innovation and openness are critical attributes of Espressif’s business.

Who Should Care?

Espressif’s products enable connected products at extremely low cost. The cost is low enough that it does not matter if the device is never connected. The low system cost gives the manufacturer great flexibility in developing the business model. Plus, the nature of Espressif’s solutions is that software development, and basic security, are relatively straightforward tasks that happen in a cubicle. Compare to Tiny Circuits, Espressif modules have better Wi-Fi capability and a faster processor.

About Gartner

Gartner, Inc. (NYSE: IT) is the world's leading information technology research and advisory company. Each year, Gartner identifies Cool Vendors in key technology areas and publishes a series of research reports highlighting these innovative vendors and their products.

1 Gartner, Inc., Cool Vendors in IoT 'Thingication,' 2016, Martin Reynolds, Brady Wang and Michele Reitz, 9 May 2016.