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Digispark Pro - tiny, Arduino ready, mobile & usb dev board!

From: David R.
Sent on: Friday, April 25, 2014 12:32 PM

The tiny Arduino IDE ready, usb and mobile dev board and ecosystem - cheap enough to leave in any project! Wi-fi, BLE, and 25+ shields!

Update: The Robots Are Here! Get a robot car kit like the one in the video - starting at just $50 with everything you need to make an app or web controlled robot - check out the rewards!

Update: Stretch goals are here! Shield descriptions, and more!

Stretch Goals:

  • $75,000 - More shields and PCBs - we'll add the LiPo shield and at least one other - we'll also make available super cheap just the PCB for each kit.
  •  $100,000 - Cheap LEDs and Special Edition! - We'll make the Kickstarter Digispark Pros with a special Kickstarter Edition silkscreen with a URL that goes to a list of all the backers. We'll make both RGB LED shields $1 each for backers only. 
  •  $150,000 - You tell us?!

Serial over USB debugging, USB programmable, 14 i/o, SPI, I2C, UART, USB Device Emulation, Mobile Development Ready, Optional BT, BLE, Mesh, and Wi-Fi.

The super small, dirt cheap, always open source, Arduino compatible, USB (and Mobile and Wireless!) development (and production) platform, and follow-up to the original Digispark.

Easier to use, more pins, more program space, more features, more reliable - supporting the entire existing Digispark ecosystem of 25+ shields and adding Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, BLE shields and more! Ready for all your projects - including mobile hardware development! All still super affordable!

The Digispark Pro Ecosystem is the cheapest, Arduino compatible development platform for Mobile and Wireless hardware development.

Small and Affordable!Small and Affordable!

In August 2012 we launched the Digispark here on Kickstarter - we hoped to share with our fellow makers a cheap, open source, Arduino compatible that was easy to use and easy to program. The Digispark has been a hit - it is used by beginners and electrical engineers alike - from education to production to hobby use - and cloned and improved upon by some of the biggest names in open source hardware. The Digispark ecosystem now boasts an active forum, wiki, and 25+ shields. In the year and half that has passed since the launch of the Digispark, I've listened closely to feedback, complaints, bug reports, and unmet needs in the Arduino and Digispark communities. The result of which is the Digispark Pro!  

The Digispark and Digispark Pro Ecosystem!The Digispark and Digispark Pro Ecosystem!

The Digispark Pro is designed to compliment the Digispark - it's the middle child between the Digispark and the full blown Arduino. It is even easier to use than the Digispark, even more compatible with standard Arduino examples, and packed full of i/o, more program space, and more features! With new shields and libraries the Digispark Pro is also the most affordable mobile hardware development platform! And it is still just as small as a Digispark, and just as affordable - because electronics should be accessible to all!

Ready for action!Ready for action!
  • Compatible with Arduino IDE 1.5 (OSX/Win/Linux)
  • Fully signed drivers and executable for easy installation
  • USB programming, USB device emulation, USB-CDC virtual serial port emulation
  • 16 Mhz AVR MCU - using a true 16Mhz precision crystal
  • 16KB Flash Memory (14.5K+ after bootloader)
  • Serial over USB debugging and communication!
  • 14 i/o Pins (2 shared with USB)
  • I2C, true SPI, UART, LIN, and USI
  • ADC on 10 pins
  • 3 PWM Channels (which can be assigned to a selection of pins)
  • Power via USB, or External Source - 5v or 6-16v (automatic selection)  
  • On-board button that can be used as a reset, program, or user button - or can be disabled to use that pin as general i/o - without changing the bootloader
  • On-board 500ma 5V regulator
  • Power LED and Test/Status LED (on Pin 1) 
  • User accessible solder jumpers to disable LEDs, and other features for lower power consumption
  • Two mounting holes.
  • Breadboard compatible pin out/spacing (the three side header pins are only for legacy shield support).
Various header options (female headers included, other can be added to your pledge)Various header options (female headers included, other can be added to your pledge)
Click for fullsizeClick for fullsize

The Digispark Pro is the cheapest, ready to go, easy to use, mobile hardware development platform!

With Bluetooth Classic, BLE, and Wi-Fi shields and examples for Android and iPhone - and USB Serial (built-in) connectivity for Android (devices with USB OTG supporting Serial devices) .

Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or BLE controlled Robot - via App or WebWi-Fi, Bluetooth, or BLE controlled Robot - via App or Web

USB Programming: 

Programming the Pro is as easy as hitting the program button when prompted to!

The Digispark Pro uses the newest Micronucleus USB bootloader for programming which allows easy programming over USB direct from the Arduino IDE (or command line). 

Micronucleus is the official bootloader of the original Digispark and it has been installed on over 40,000 devices. It is a completely open source, community driven project, and has proven to be the smallest, most reliable, USB bootloader for the Attiny series of MCUs. 

USB Debugging: 

The Digispark Pro can emulate a USB Serial Port! This makes it as easy to use as an Arduino Uno for beginners/debugging!

With the help of friend, LittleWire creator, and Digispark user Ihsan Kehribar ( - the Digispark Pro supports emulating a USB CDC/Serial Device - when enabled it shows up as a serial port on all major platforms (OS X/Win/Linux/Raspi/Android) - which means it will work with the Arduino Serial Monitor, other programs designed for Arduinos that appear as a serial port, and be much easier to integrate into custom programs!

USB Device Emulation: 

We also provide libraries for the Pro to emulate a USB Keyboard, Mouse, Joystick, or Generic HID Device, This means it can appear to your computer as if it were that type of device - allowing you to easily have your device type, move the mouse, act as a joystick, and more!

Mobile control over USBMobile control over USB
Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, BLE, Mesh shields: The Digispark Pro is backwards compatible with all existing Digispark shields - and it has some shields exclusive for the Pro including: a Wi-Fi shield, a Bluetooth Classic shield, a Bluetooth 4.0/Low Energy Shield, and a nRF24L01+ low cost mesh networking shield. These low cost shields make the Digispark Pro the cheapest way to jump into Internet of Things, Mobile, and Wireless development!

I2C, SPI, UART, LIN, USI: The Digispark Pro is ready to connect to just about any peripheral - it has stand alone SPI, a UART (with LIN capabilties), and I2C that is shared with a USI bus - which could act as a second SPI or UART for advanced users. This gives it all the bus options of an Arduino Uno and more!

Mesh, Wi-Fi, and BT/BLE ShieldsMesh, Wi-Fi, and BT/BLE Shields

The Digispark Pro is made by Digistump - the company my wife, Jenni, and I started after the success of the Digispark. Digistump is committed to being an open source company - and everything we make is licensed under open source licenses - generally CC-BY-SA 3.0 and we make sure that the source files you would need to make one yourself are all available - including EagleCad sources and pdf schematics. 

All source files (Eagle sources, schematics, and all software/firmware) will be released when the project ships, if not before. The hardware will be released under CC-BY-SA 3.0, and the software will be released under CC-BY-SA 3.0, GPL, LGPL, and/or MIT - as required by the sources it was derived from. None of the licenses will prevent the Digispark Pro from being used in commercial projects, or require disclosure of the code uploaded on to them. 

The Digispark Pro and the Original DigisparkThe Digispark Pro and the Original Digispark

We believe in transparency: All backers will be able to see their place in the shipping queue, and their estimated ship date at all times.

The delivery estimates given for the rewards are for the start of shipping. We plan to produce these in-house and (if enough are needed) in a factory by contract. By overlapping those two methods of production we are confident we can absorb most unknowns and deliver on time. We are able to ship 200+ packages a day - and will not rest until all orders go out. We have a proven track record of putting our backers first, and we will continue to strive to deliver a quality product, on time, with excellent (and personal) customer service. 

Here is what we have already done: (Digistump and some of our helpful supporters)

  • Several rounds of Prototypes
  • Part selection for production
  • Small batch production on our in-house pick and place
  • Development of the USB Serial device emulation code and drivers
  • Modifications to the bootloader to support the Digispark Pro
  • Arduino IDE Libraries and Modifications to support the Digispark Pro

Here is what we are still working on (and when they will be completed):

  • Test jigs for volume assembly (during this Kickstarter)
  • Finalize parts selection (during this Kickstarter)
  • Finalize production ready prototypes (during this Kickstarter)
  • Ramp up in house production (during this Kickstarter)
  • Finishing touches on Arduino IDE Libraries and Modifications (during this Kickstarter)
  • Authorize contract production (if needed - immediately when this Kickstarter ends)
  • Production (1-3 months)
  • Shipping (200 per day)

The Pro will be well documented, to start with by us, and the community will be invited to expand the documentation as well. A wiki will be used for getting started guides, tutorials, diagrams, and more. Our community forums will be available for questions and our email support will be ready to handle hardware or shipment issues. We believe that a product cannot be successful without a combination of an active community and top notch support.

The original Digispark benefits, and thrives, from a large, helpful, and very beginner friendly community. We can't wait to get the Digispark Pro into people's hands, and continue to expand that community.

Check out the community forums:

And our wiki (for our existing products):

We believe in putting our open source community before business - and have gone out of our way to help other companies making derivatives of our products - like the Digispark. We put open source first, always, because we know we wouldn't be where we are without the open source companies that shared the knowledge we needed to build the Digispark and our other products. 

Easy for beginners and powerful for advanced users!Easy for beginners and powerful for advanced users!


You can add the WiFi, Bluetooth, BLE, and nRF24L01+/Mesh shields to any reward (you must have a reward selected). After you pledge you will get a Kickstarter message with a link to the Add-on page where you can add any of the 25+ shields!

(All kits come with surface mount parts assembled, thru hole (such as headers) require basic soldering)

The shields featured here can be added on the add-on page for the following exclusive Kickstarter prices:

WiFi Shield: $30 each
Bluetooth Classic: $15 each
Bluetooth Low Energy (aka BLE/BT 4.0): $20 each
nRF24L01+ (mesh networking): $7 each

Robot Kit: We've added kits for the Robot shown in the video - you can get a complete kit to assemble it for Bluetooth, BLE, or WiFi usage - starting at just $50 - check out the rewards! And you can add extra Digispark Pros or shields from the Add-ons page after you pledge.

Beta Tester Rewards: We are offering a super limited number of Beta boards. These will be assembled in house and will ship within two weeks of the end of the Kickstarter*. They will also include a special exclusive small surprise kit, that will only be produced for these rewards! These boards may differ slightly (in appearance and function) and may have small bugs - but you will be the very first to get a Digispark Pro by several months! The higher cost of these rewards cover the exclusive kit and small scale assembly.

Early Adopter Specials: We have several reward levels the provide a significant discount for early adopters. Not only that, but early adopter orders will ship first.

Reward levels for all: One Digispark isn't much use - so we've tried to provide plenty of reward levels for every type of backer from first time experimenter, to dedicated Arduino fans. The Digispark Pro is priced at $10 each, plus $4 per order for US shipping, and $5 for international. This reflects the actual cost of insured shipping.

Online Project Guide: Kickstarter has kindly approved our reward with multiple Digispark Pros because our project guide will feature tutorials that required more than one Digispark Pro. From the basic getting started with the blink sketch, to wireless communication (two Pros), getting started with Mesh Networking (3+ Pros) - the online project guide will provide some easy to follow tutorials to get you started with some projects. It will be free to all Digispark Pro users.

Exclusive Prices: Without shipping costs the Digispark Pro is about $10 (a third the price of an Arduino!). We want to get the Digispark in production and into your hands, so these prices represent exclusive discounted prices!

A trio of Pros!A trio of Pros!

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

For the Digispark Pro we have a split production plan. We will be producing it in-house and by contract (if demand requires it) so that even if one has delays the other can fill the gap.

For sourcing we have partnered with Atmel to ensure that we can get the main MCU within our timeline. The other parts are available form multiple suppliers and can be easily substituted if necessary.

Shipping will be done in-house and we have solid experience shipping 200+ packages a day - which will be the rate of shipment.

Transparency is by far the most important thing when unexpected obstacles and delays arise - all backers will get a status page where they can see their place in the shipping queue as well as their estimated ship date based on current production schedules. Additionally, any delay will be promptly explained in an update.

While we have lots of experience in production, sourcing, and fulfillment - things can and do go wrong - we've picked a date that allows for some error, but July should be considered a start date - we plan to start shipping in July and will ship 200+ shipments a day until they are all complete.

Our Sponsors

  • E::SPACE Labs

    Technology Incubator in the high tech electronic hardware segment

  • The Tech Alliance of Central Oregon


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