Give your ItsyBitsy project a lift with the Adafruit AirLift Bitsy Add-On – a daughterboard that lets you use the powerful ESP32 as a WiFi co-processor. You probably have your favorite ItsyBitsy (like the Itsy’ M4) that comes with its own set of awesome peripherals and lots of libraries. But it doesn’t have WiFi built in! So lets give that chip a best friend, the ESP32. This chip can handle all the heavy lifting of connecting to a WiFi network and transferring data from a site, even if its using the latest TLS/SSL encryption (it has root certificates pre-burned in).
Having WiFi managed by a separate chip means your code is simpler, you don’t have to cache socket data, or compile in & debug an SSL library. Send basic but powerful socket-based commands over 8MHz SPI for high speed data transfer.
You can use any ItsyBitsy with 3V logic (that means the ItsyBitsy 32u4 5V is not going to work), although the ’32u4 Itsy will not be able to do very complex tasks or buffer a lot of data. It also works great with CircuitPython, a SAMD51/Cortex M4 minimum required since we need a bunch of RAM. All you need is an SPI bus and 2 control pins plus a 3V power supply that can provide up to 250mA during WiFi usage.
We’ve tested this with all our ItsyBitsy and it should work just fine with them except the ItsyBitsy 32u4 5V (because the voltage is not right). For use in Arduino, the ItsyBitsy ’32u4 3V can do basic connectivity and data transfer but they do not have a lot of RAM so we don’t recommend them – use the M0, M4 or similar, for best results! For CircuitPython use, an ItsyBitsy M4 is required – the M0 series does not have enough RAM in CircuitPython.
Adafruit has had paid day off for voting for our team for years, if you need help getting that going for your organization, let us know – we can share how and why we did this as well as the good results. Here are some resources for voting by mail, voting in person, and some NY resources for our NY based teams as well. If there are additional resources to add, please let us know – adafruit.com/vote
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.