Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev Board - Sigfox, WiFi & BLE - Cover Expand

Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev Board - Sigfox, WiFi & BLE



The Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 features Sigfox for long range, WiFi for mid-range and BLE for short range, making it extremely versatile for IoT applications.

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Wireless communications have changed the way we live, both personally and professionally, and it’s hard to ignore the fact that over just a decade or two, we’ve all become completely reliant on the wireless mobile devices and internet services we use on a daily basis. And while we could still certainly live without such technologies, they offer so many amazing benefits in modern life that it’s simply quite dumb not to take full advantage of them. This is why we love seeing cool wireless technologies being integrated in awesomeDevelopment Boards like the Pycom SiPy IoT Dev’ Board, which features both WiFi and Bluetooth (a killer combo for close and medium range) as well as the very exciting Sigfox protocol – which of course focuses on long range comm’s, making this IoT Board a serious contender in the electronics world.


Three Communications Protocols on One Tiny Board!

The Pycom SiPy IoT Dev Board is part of the Pycom LPWAN Range, and is equipped with three different protocols, with each having distinct benefits and drawbacks. However, with all three, you can truly enjoy the best of All worlds, with Bluetooth catering to close-range, WiFi catering to medium range, and Sigfox handling up to 50km of long range. But of course, as we say, each of these have their own pros and cons, so let’s explore each of them in more detail to understand how you, as a Maker, can benefit from them:

  • Bluetooth – Being one of the communications that were popularised in early days, back when Nokia were still producing their glorious brick phones, there are very few people who don’t know what Bluetooth is, with a lot of people commonly using it on a daily basis. However, this Bluetooth is designed around the Bluetooth 4.2 standard, and features both BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) as well as BR/EDR for streaming and audio applications too. And while it may not be the most powerful or versatile protocols around, the low cost and simple nature of it has allowed it to become integrated into almost all wireless devices nowadays. This makes it a great addition to any module or board, regardless of what else it might also offer, and adds a good range of functionality that is an excellent solution for a reasonably wide number of use cases.

  • WiFi – With the rise of the internet and the ways in which we interact with it, with routers around the home and WiFi included in almost every phone since 2018, WiFi is definitely a close competitor to Bluetooth in terms of widespread use and functionality. And while it doesn’t quiet feature the extremely low cost that Bluetooth offers, it certainly has some impressive benefits that make it the best choice for high data rates at moderate distances. This, when coupled with Bluetooth, is already enough to make IoT Development Boards incredibly versatile, and with an impressive range of 1km (we recommend an External 2.4GHz Antenna for this) you can create complex mesh networks and nodes even over large areas like farms or massive warehouses.

  • Sigfox – With the rising popularity of LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network), Sigfox has been a rather recent addition to the niche, and has introduced an incredibly long-range wireless communication protocol that focuses purely on low frequency, small transmissions at an extremely long range. This is perfect for IoT applications like vehicle fleet tracking, agriculture, service monitoring and metering, as well as other use cases that only need to transmit data up to 24 times a day. It is typically designed to stay in deep sleep until it needs to kick into action, allowing for a long lifespan, and is usually one-way communication unless specified otherwise for specific purposes.

Of course, despite these communications protocols being the key features of these boards, the Pycom SiPy IoT RCZ1/3 Dev’ Board also offers some other really cool features that set it apart from other boards. To start, the SiPy features an onboard Xtensa LX6 Dual-Core MCU to operate at a rapid speed while consuming minimal power. This is coupled with a reasonably beefy 4MB of Flash memory, onboard hash/encryption capabilities, a decent level of security, and a design that is quiet similar to Particle IoT Boards, being both tiny in size and breadboard compatible. These all help to emphasise the functionality of the SiPy IoT Dev’ Board, and make it a true master in its craft when it comes to microcontroller versatility and wireless communications.


Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev’ Board  -  Technical Specifications:

  • Operating Voltage

– 3.3V DC

  • Input Voltage Range (VIN)

– 3.5V to 5.5V DC

  • Output Voltage (3V3)

– 3.3V DC @ ≤400mA

  • Current Consumption

– 37.7 to 160mA

  • Current Consumption (Deep Sleep)

– 15.1mA


– Xtensa® Dual-Core 32-bit LX6 @ up to 600 DMIPS     

  • Onboard Clock

– 150kHz

  • RAM

– 520kB

  • Flash

– 4MB

  • WiFi Protocol

– 802.11 b/g/n/e/i

  • Frequency Range

– 2.4GHz

  • WiFi Range

– 1km

  • Bluetooth Protocol

– Bluetooth V4.2

– Bluetooth BLE

– Bluetooth BR/EDR

  • Sigfox Supported Frequencies


– EMEA Uplink: 868130 kHz

– EMEA Downlink: 869525 kHz

– Korea/Japan Uplink: 923200 kHz

– Korea/Japan Downlink: 922200 kHz

  • Sigfox Data Rate (Any Distance)

– 100bps

  • Sigfox Max Distance

– 50km

  • Sigfox TX Power

– +14dBm

  • Sigfox RX Sensitivity

– -126dBm

  • Security Protocols

– SSL/TLS Support

– WPA Enterprise Security

  • Hashing/Encryption Support

– SHA / MD5 / DES / AES

  • Certifications

– CE RED | FCC | IC | CE

  • Weight (Package)

– 31g

  • Weight (Board)

– 7g

  • Dimensions (with Headers)

– 55 x 20 x 10mm


Typical Applications for the Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev Board:

As you may suspect, the Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev’ Board is primarily designed for projects that need to keep connected at all times, and great examples of these kinds of projects include large fleet vehicle tracking, warehousing and industrial monitoring, wide area sensor networks and cross-protocol node networking. However, with so much power and functionality at a relatively low cost, we can see these boards being used for all kinds of different projects. from basic home automation to clever integration with autopiloted quadcopters. No matter how you want to use them though, these boards are certainly excellent pieces of modern hardware, and are definitely worth investing in if you want to experiment with all of the cool features and functionality they offer.


Additional Resources:

  • One of the best things about Pycom is that they are very community-focused, and have a handy Pycom Documentation Hub, where you can find datasheets, pinout diagrams, tutorials, guides, firmware and other handy resources.

  • Finally, if you’re still stuck or looking for answers after reviewing the datasheet and other resources, the Pycom Official Forum is the place to go, where you can ask questions, share ideas and get help with troubleshooting.


Finally, if you’re looking for a quick video rundown and review of the SiPy, be sure to check out this Pycom SiPy Overview by Core Electronics. However, it must be noted that he questions the purpose of the SiPy when comparing it to the LoPy4, although it’s easy to see that SiPy was designed specifically for ultra-low cost, with the exclusion of the LoRa protocol drastically reducing the overall price:


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Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev Board - Sigfox, WiFi & BLE

Pycom SiPy RCZ1/3 IoT Dev Board - Sigfox, WiFi & BLE