GENEVA, Jan. 6, 2016 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- The lightweight and low-power PIQ sports wearable device for performance measurement and coaching, launched to golf and tennis communities during 2015, relies on key sense, control, and communication technologies from STMicroelectronics (NYSE: STM), a global semiconductor leader serving customers across the spectrum of electronics applications.
By tracking hand and wrist movement in multiple axes for accurate 3D analysis, the PIQ multi-sport sensor helps improve performance and technique. The 44mm x 39mm x 5mm device, weighing just 10 grams, is worn easily in a wristband, clipped to a golf glove, or integrated into a strap.
For tennis, through a partnership with the French string and racket company Babolat, the on-wrist display shows statistics such as speed and lift, and data from each shot is shared with a mobile application for detailed analysis. When used as a golf sensor with Mobitee golfing accessories and digital course maps, the PIQ device displays distance to the green and shares data for instant playback of shots. To add a feature for ski sessions, PIQ has partnered with Rossignol to launch a strap and a mobile application that can record runs, analyze jumps and turns, and allow skiers to challenge friends!
"Our goal was to deliver the best possible user experiences by every applicable metric to make sport more exciting," explained Cédric Mangaud, CEO at PIQ. "ST simply had the best control, sense, communication, and power-management solutions to help achieve this. This allowed us to have ST as 1-stop supplier, without any compromise, and positions us to continue on the path to meeting our ambition of 24 sports and games in our application and partnership portfolio."
The PIQ team chose ST's efficient and high-performing STM32F4 microcontroller for the multi-sport sensor's main controller to achieve the peak performance needed for complex processing of sensor data. The STM32F4's rich set of power-management features helped cut power consumption to the absolute minimum, to maximize battery lifetime, which is a critical parameter in wearables.
PIQ's Bluetooth® wireless subsystem connects to the user's smartphone using ST's BlueNRG(TM) Bluetooth Smart wireless controller. BlueNRG has best-in-class low power consumption, and saves space when teamed with the BALF-NRG companion chip for connecting the radio aerial. BALF-NRG leverages ST's IPD Integrated Passive Devices expertise, occupying as little as 1.19mm2 on the circuit board while also enhancing wireless performance.
The PIQ design team has also taken advantage of ST's pre-eminence in MEMS  technology to integrate the LPS25HB barometric pressure sensor. ST is the market leader in MEMS and sensors for wearables, with over 25% market share according to the analyst IHS, and has almost 1,000 MEMS-related patents and patent applications worldwide. In addition, the multi-sport sensor benefits from the high performance and efficiency of the STBC02 lithium-battery charge controller, which helps manage power and maximize battery life, and the STM6600 smart push-button controller for the on/off and reset buttons.
Moreover, ST is supplying major components of the PIQ sensor's battery charger, a separate device that takes advantage of the STBCFG01 high-efficiency battery charger IC with smart charge-control features, the LD39130S ultra-small high-accuracy voltage regulator, and the low-cost, power-efficient STM32F0 as the battery-charger system microcontroller.
The STM32F4, STM32F0, and BlueNRG Bluetooth IC all feature ARM® Cortex®-M cores. ST is the world's leading supplier of ARM Cortex-M microcontrollers, and has a portfolio spanning all core types including M0, M0+, M3, M4, and the latest M7.
"The PIQ multi-sport sensor is a remarkable achievement that takes wearable devices to the next level," said Philip Lolies, EMEA Vice President, Marketing & Application, STMicroelectronics. "The many ST components chosen for this project show how our highly miniaturized, energy-conscious devices and associated design-enablement tools present a powerful solution for the next generation of smart things."
ST is a global semiconductor leader delivering intelligent and energy-efficient products and solutions that power the electronics at the heart of everyday life. ST's products are found everywhere today, and together with our customers, we are enabling smarter driving and smarter factories, cities and homes, along with the next generation of mobile and Internet of Things devices.
By getting more from technology to get more from life, ST stands for life.augmented.
In 2014, the Company's net revenues were $7.40 billion, serving more than 100,000 customers worldwide. Further information can be found at www.st.com.
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PIQ is a French subsidiary of Octonion, Swiss-based company specialized in software and services for sensors. PIQ is a young and dynamic company that has passion for sport, innovation and the quest for performance in its DNA. PIQ ambition is to become the most legitimate partner with leading sport brands to design the best wearable accessory. PIQ's mission is simple: make sport more exciting and highlight the best moments sport players can have.
PIQ team is made of seasoned executives, designers and engineers located in Switzerland, France, Eastern Europe and the United States.
PIQ is manufactured by Foxconn, the world's largest electronics contract manufacturer in the world. For more info, please go to
 MEMS: Micro Electro-Mechanical Systems, including miniature chip-scale pressure sensors, accelerometers, magnetometers, gyroscopes and microphones.