Integrated, low-power bridge device

Jon Lawson

Silicon Labs has added a smaller, lower-power member to its family of USBXpress bridge devices, providing a simpler, faster way to add universal serial bus (USB) connectivity to new and legacy embedded designs.

Silicon Labs’ new CP2102N USB controller eliminates complex, time-consuming firmware development and provides advanced functionality in QFN packages as small as 3mm x 3mm.

The CP2102N device simplifies USB-to-UART connectivity and speeds time to market for a wide range of portable, power-sensitive and space-constrained applications such as USB dongles, point-of-sale (POS) terminals, data loggers, gaming controllers and personal medical devices.

For additional CP2102N USBXpress product information, to order product samples and evaluation kits, and to try out the new Xpress Configurator USB configuration tool, visit

With the rapid adoption of USB in embedded designs, developers are seeking faster, economical ways to add USB connectivity to their applications. Silicon Labs’ highly integrated CP2102N USB-to-UART bridge controller provides a simple, drop-in solution for adding USB to new designs and also for updating existing RS-232 designs to USB using minimal components and printed circuit board (PCB) space. Based on Silicon Labs’ proven architecture that eliminates the need for costly external crystals, resistors and other external components, the fixed-function bridge device integrates a USB 2.0 Full Speed controller and UART interface in a single-chip solution that helps reduce bill of materials (BOM) cost for space-constrained applications.

The CP2102N device is Silicon Labs’ lowest power USB connectivity solution, delivering a low operating current of <10 mA and extending battery life for power-sensitive applications. Advanced, integrated features such as a remote wake-up capability and USB battery charger detection allow the device to wake-up a suspended host and to detect the type of charger connected to the system, further reducing BOM cost.

The CP2102N bridge controller eliminates the need for USB protocol expertise or time-consuming firmware and driver development, enabling developers to focus their time and resources on their end applications. Pin- and software-compatible with Silicon Labs’ existing CP210x USB devices, the CP2102N provides an easy migration to the latest USB-to-UART bridge technology. These fixed-function devices are for embedded designs that require USB connectivity with minimal development effort or for any application that needs to be upgraded to USB from legacy serial interfaces such as UART.