Webinar: Smart Home Automation: Join Your BeaglePlay and BeagleConnect with Home Assistant


Webinar Date: May 11, 2023

Smart Home Automation: Join Your BeaglePlay and BeagleConnect with Home Assistant

This post covers Key Takeaways and Frequently Asked Questions from the beagleboard.org Smart Home Automation: Join Your BeaglePlay and BeagleConnect with Home Assistant webinar regarding smart home automation. Whether you’re a seasoned professional or a curious newcomer, you’ll find plenty of valuable information watching the webinar. Links to the Webinar, Resources, and Related Content are provided within the post. A copy of the PowerPoint presentation will be provided for customers that register to watch the recorded webinar. All Snippets and Content Compliments of beagleboard.org.

Key Takeaways

  • Beagle is a Michigan, USA based non-profit Foundation (BeagleBoard.org - about)
  • Beagle focuses on embedded, reliability, longevity, control and machine learning, and are not just your regular cheap computers
  • Beagle has an open and collaborative approach with open hardware, detailed documentation and open source bootloader
  • Beagle is an entrepreneurial and open community of domain experts that share our passion and approach
  • BeaglePlay makes distributed embedded Linux easy

Frequently Asked Questions

What should be the power supply rating for Beagle play board?

  • 5V 3A USB-C, but you can power it with much less current realistically.

Very interesting, but where can I find all those information to develop for BeaglePlay? Will there be another book? It’s easy to miss something important with such a complex system.

BeaglePlay question: What are the use cases for the single-pair Ethernet? Is this targeted for industrial users? I couldn’t find a lot of off the shelf USB adapters (aka where does one buy USB to Ethernet adapters for the PC?). Looks like it was current-limited so is it intended to power offboard sensor or to power the BeaglePlay?

  • SPE is targeting industrial and building automation. We use 10Base-T1L, not 10Base-T1S like is used in cars. It can also be used for reliable communication in the home, but it is a nice wired alternative to what we are doing with BeagleConnect Freedom to provide a more reliable communication, potentially real-time (TSN), in industrial or commercial environments. To use it, you’ll need some type of bridge, like what BeaglePlay provides–I probably wouldn’t try to do anything with a USB dongle from a PC. For nodes, you can look at some of the SPE MCU dev boards from SparkFun. The PoDL provided on the board, yes, is intended to power MCU-based sensors that are nearby. At 5V/250mA, it is pretty flexible in the 10-20ft range, but for the 1km range that is possible, 5V probably isn’t suitable.

What use cases do you see for the BeagleConnect Freedom?

  • There are a lot of cases, from scientific applications, datalogging, environmental monitoring, building automation or industrial automation, but the home assistant is a huge one as well monitoring HVACs and air quality in restaurants and hotels, there are many applications.

How long will BeaglePlay and BeagleConnect Freedom be available?

  • Our goal, 10+ years, it’s all related to the availability of TI parts.

What is the operating temp for beagle play?

  • Sorry Commercial only, 0-60 we think, haven’t rated it higher yet.

Can you program the microcontrollers on the BeaglePlay using C language?

  • Of course, GCC for the M4 for example and there is a PRU C Compiler.

Is solar power feasible- what is the power requirement for BeagleConnect?

  • Sub 80mA full transmit at 2.4 GHz.

Power requirements for Connect Freedom?

  • Sub 80mA full transmit at 2.4 GHz.

What is the max display resolution supported for beagle play board?

  • 2048x1080 over LVDS or 1080P over HDMI.

Do you use MQTT Sparkplug B?

  • In our image today, we use Debian’s mosquitto client and Home-Assisant’s plugin.

Have you tried patching PREEMPT_RT in that kernel?

  • With our current, 5.10.x-ti branch, PREEMPT_RT doesn’t boot on am62, we currently ship a mainline branch with 6.3’s rt patchset. I have a thread in forum.beagleboard.org on how to switch over to the RT kernel.

Is there a case model available in STL format for BeaglePlay?

Can you build for Freedom with the onboard tools of the play? What dev environments have examples? (Eclipse, VS Code, etc?)

  • We pre-install west, so users can rebuild the default firmware image on the device.

Is the 1 wire EEprom part of the Mikrobus standard or was that added by Beagle Foundation?

  • It is part of the Mikrobus standard going forward. They are adding it to boards in a rolling fashion.

When you say “autodetected” are you saying that a wireless connected play will detect and configure a mikrobus on a freedom on the network? Or is the autodetection just at the Freedom level?

  • With Click boards with an ID, when the BeagleConnect connects to the BeaglePlay, it’ll do a probe call in the microbus driver, setup all the gpio configuration, and load the proper linux driver… Thus the device will look like a ‘local’ device, all over greybus!

Is PRU support available?

  • We pre-installed all the TI pru libraries, but we know users want to use pru-uio! working with zmatt on irc, who has supported most of the uio support on am335x over the years.

Is the board capable of LoRA? PoE?

  • LoRa is not supported on CC1352 due to how the PHY does modulation. It’s more geared towards something like Amazon Sidewalk. No on-board POE, the Single Pair ethernet will power down stream devices.

SDR work for 345Mhz honeywell door/window sensors? external antenna?

  • Antenna is external yes (included in the box) but CC1352 433Mhz or 868Mhz depending on region.

I used Beagleboard before, and I had a problem with the Ethernet port. Actually, ethernet module. The first beagleboard has a variable IP address, and I couldn’t fix it. Is the new version which you present capable of static IP?

My other question is about GPIOs. I am designing small multi-agent cars. Therefore, I am using CAN port instead UART or USB because we want to design like a real vehicle. Does it has already embedded CAN module, or do we have to connect externally?

  • You will have to connect it externally, but the AM62 SoC does have CAN peripherals.

Is there any documentation on using existing mikroBUS boards without a click id?

  • The Click ID implements what we call a Manifest file into the eeprom, our bus driver allows you to load this manifest manually, as lots of mikroBUS boards in the field pre-date the new spec.

How would you compare/contrast BeagleBoard Foundation with the Raspberry Pi Foundation?

  • Our focus is more on embedded systems and giving real control to users without barriers, rather than just computer literacy. Also, there is no “for profit” arm of BeagleBoard.org, just the non-profit.

Does the CC1352 work down into the VHF freq. (150MHz) ?

  • CC1352 is 868Mhz or 433Mhz depending on the region.

Good morning/afternoon, DGK is promoting Beagleplay but I can’t find anything on the web site, is it limited to USA market?

Has this webinar started? I am not hearing anything.

  • Try refresh your screen.

where do you get the beagleconnect?

Can you compare the BeaglePlay to the Home Assistant Blue?

  • The Home-Assistant Blue uses a CM4 module + SiLabs zigbee radio… Supported by Home-Assistant… Our Board uses a TI am62 and TI cc1352 module, that we are working up-streaming to Buildroot and then Home-Assistant…

Can you use the BeagleConnect with Home Assistant Blue?

  • We use our own Zephr stack to do some really fun things (iio in linux) , you could use TI’s zigbee stack on a BeagleConnect.

Hard realtime or soft realtime RTOS?

What bcf stands for?

  • BeagleConnect Freedom.

Dose the Beagle board have USB 3?

  • It does not, there is a USB2.0 Port and the USB-C port can also do Data, but 2.0 only.

If this is your first embedded Linux entry, would you recommend the BeaglePlay or something simpler?

  • Our goal at BeagleBoard.org is to make these easy for new users to jump in and learn.

Where can I find the environmental specs for the connect? I didn’t see it in the hardware and design specs.

  • Sadly just commercial today, industrial would need changes to the BOM.

Is it possible to use Yocto with BeaglePlay?

  • TI merged our tree to meta-ti.

Is there a specific web site dedicated to amateur radio applications.

  • Not yet but we are welcoming suggestions!

Can it be powered via Ethernet PoE?

  • Sadly no POE on the BeaglePlay, it would have added some complexty to the board.

Is Azure IoT Edge supported on this board? I see many linux varieties supported such as ubuntu centos Debian wind river, yocto but i dont see your flavor.

  • I’ve only see one user ask us about this in our forum, the Azure IoT debian package instaleld cleanly… Haven’t heard a followup.

If the application needs to read and write frequently, is it sill possible to use the eMMC or would that wear quickly? What would be your recommendation for that edge controller like use case?

  • The eMMC is going to have better wear behavior than something like an SD card so yes, that would be a good place to store data. The recommendation for lots of data is always to write to RAM and send it over the network if you’re able to however.

Can the radio work with LoRaWAN?

  • LoRa is not supported on CC1352 due to how the PHY does modulation. It’s more geared towards something like Amazon Sidewalk.

Any advice on using the the BeagleConnect: Freedom outside? I’m thinking of an Ag use case.

  • You’ll want to cover the socket openings to protect from rain. Temperature should be fine, just protect from dust and rain.

I may have missed this. What is the best IDE for development?

  • We personally use VSCode, mostly as it’s platform Independent, and we have a fork running on the BeaglePlay thru the web browser.

Is power -over-ethernet supported?

  • Sadly no POE on the BeaglePlay, it would have added some complexty to the board.

Is linux image of home assistant good to work on this board - I didn’t find begale play specific image in Installation - Home Assistant

  • We have our own port today as a proof of concept, Home-Assistant needs upstream Buildroot support, so we are working on it.

Can BeaglePlay be used with ROS?

  • So, ROS on amd64 needs Ubuntu, we’ve been playing with doing ROS in a docker image. But to support ROS properly, you really need to run Ubuntu’s rootfs, whereas BeagleBoard.org is mostly Debian based. It wouldn’t take much to run Ubuntu directly, it’s mostly testing and supporting image releases…

What is the operating temperature range for BFC?

  • Sadly just commercial, for Industrial we need to tweak the BOM.

BeagleConnect Freedom questions: - What use cases do you see for BeagleConnect Freedom? - Is Single-pair ethernet applicable to it? (seems not) - Do you have any material related to topologies? You mentioned using BeaglePlay as a gateway. Is the intent that it aggregates multiple BeagleConnect through wireless?

  • I answered about BCF use cases on the call. BCF (BeagleConnect Freedom) is primarily for wireless communication, but doing SPE prototyping should be possible with an SPE Click. The idea with BCF is indeed to connect several of them (wirelessly) to BeaglePlay.

Will Qt run well on the Play?

  • Qt does work, our default image use xfce today, but a few qt apps are running… We are working with Imagination, so all the qt graphics acceleration (thru wayland) should and will work (and then with open source mesa, more coming!)

Thanks, so Imagination who work with the Black are going to work with the Play?

  • I’m not sure I understand what you mean by Imagination? For the Black, we have a different GPU, imagination is still trying to figure out what they want to do…

How do you compare BeaglePlay with Aurdino or Raspberry pie?

  • The BeaglePlay is very comparable to the Raspberry Pi, but with our goal to be as easy as the Arduino.

Can you talk about mikroBUS. Is this new industry standard interface? I have not seen it on other dev kits before.

  • mikroBUS is an open standard from mikroe.com , they have slowly been getting pre-installed on every new SBC or micro-controller development board.

Webinar and Resource Links

Webinar Registration Link:

DigiKey Webinar Center:

DigiKey TechForum Webinar Posts:

Supplier Center:

DigiKey Beagle Product Offerings:


Example Webinar Slides

-Much more in-depth slides and a copy of the PowerPoint presentation will be provided for customers that register to watch the recorded webinar.