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3 min read

How to build your next smartwatch UIs - without killing your battery.

By Alecia O'Brien on Jul 25, 2019 11:08:37 AM

NXP's i.MX 7ULP and Crank Storyboard UIs – a winning combination for 3D graphics processing on small battery-operated devices.

When I went looking for a forgotten smart watch charger while camping this past weekend, I cursed at the manufacturers who hadn't met my power needs. Yes, my girls were all over my watch playing with the graphics, but the fact my battery died hours before the sun went down was beyond frustrating.

For this reason, giving consumers a brilliant, touch screen experience that doesn't have a battery-sucking trade off is the goal of engineers globally.

Consider this: the present battery technology road map has a 2x capacity improvement every decade, while the power demand will probably increase at the rate of 2x every 18 months or so. This stat reinforces the need to continually innovate power solutions for small battery-operated devices. 

Our partner NXP went to work on this several years ago and appear to have solved this challenge with the launch of the i.MX 7ULP - the lowest power consuming GPU enabled microprocessor on the market. It runs a rich OS, but operates at MCU level low-power all while having both a 2D and 3D GPU on board, which means future smart devices like the smart watch I want for Christmas is going to have an incredibly long battery life, while having ALL the features and fancy 3D and 2D graphics I didn't even know were possible.

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2 min read

Adding 3D to UIs: Importing FBX models into Storyboard

By Jennie on Oct 6, 2016 2:40:03 PM

3D elements add movement, dimension, and life to embedded applications. Aesthetics aside, they also enhance user experience and improve findability of information with a visual perspective that 2D graphics lack. As processors and GPUs evolve, embedded applications are becoming richer and 3D content more prevalent.

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Using 3D Models with Storyboard 2.0

By Jason Clarke on May 18, 2012 12:53:00 PM

Our UI Designer Dan gives a great walkthrough of how to use Storyboard's new 3D model support in the video below. This example shows how to move from Blender to Storyboard and use standard animations to move your model.

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