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Espressif jumpstarts ESP32 development
30 April 2019, Design Automation

Espressif Systems has introduced two tools to assist developers using its ESP32 microcontroller platform in simplifying and speeding up their designs.

As developers know, building production-ready firmware is not an easy task. Along with the basic functionality of the product, one also needs to consider building smartphone applications and integrating cloud platforms. ESP-Jumpstart is a new reference guide which aims to help developers convert their ideas into actual products in the least possible amount of time. It provides users with a complete guide for product development.

ESP-Jumpstart is based on Espressif’s IoT development framework, ESP-IDF, and discusses all the necessary steps and best practices for product development in a simple, well-structured way. The development framework includes the following chapters:

• Driver APIs for ESP32

• Wi-Fi connection

• Network configuration

• Remote control (cloud)

• Over-the-air (OTA) firmware updates

• Manufacturing

• Security considerations

ESP-Jumpstart allows users to easily modify the code in the application layer and adjust it to their own product and the peripheral drivers they want to use. This can significantly reduce the time usually required to convert a simple idea into an actual product that is ready for mass production.

ESP32 now also supports Dialogflow, a conversational interface from Google which enables IoT developers to embed natural-language processing in their devices. This Google service runs on the Google Cloud Platform, allowing users to build engaging voice- and text-based conversational interfaces for their products, powered by artificial intelligence (AI).

Dialogflow offers a user-friendly and intuitive natural-language processing (NLP) method that incorporates Google’s machine-learning expertise and products such as Google Cloud Speech-to-Text. Dialogflow is the most widely-used tool for building Actions, Skills, bots and apps, featuring reduced complexity, pay-as-you-go pricing and customised wake words. There are no certification hassles since users are not integrating their products with Alexa or Google Assistant, but rather using Dialogflow to build their own conversational platforms for their own products.

Unlike voice assistants, Dialogflow lets users configure every step of the conversation in any given project. For example, a Dialogflow agent for a laundry project will provide information only about the configurable parameters of the laundry (e.g. status, temperature, wash cycle etc.).

Espressif’s Voice-Assistant SDK (ESP-VA-SDK) provides an implementation of Google’s Dialogflow for the ESP32 microcontroller. Additionally, the same SDK works with Google’s Voice Assistant (GVA) and Amazon’s Alexa Voice Service.

Espressif’s SDK contains prebuilt libraries for Alexa, GVA and Dialogflow along with resources for such utility components as the audio pipeline and connection manager


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