Author Topic: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics  (Read 2453 times)

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Offline carl0s

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ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« on: July 22, 2018, 06:51:42 am »
This is interesting. Even just a few weeks ago, I couldn't fathom out whether TouchGFX was 'free' (binary blobs) for STM32, like StEmWin is. I gather it isn't (or wasn't).
Now I see that ST has acquired TouchGFX :-) https://touchgfx.com/news/

TouchGFX, emWin (STemWin), and finally Embedded Wizard, are all pre-programmed demos, on the STM32L4R9 Discovery kit that I've been playing with.

Do we think this means TouchGFX will become free when used on certain STM32 chips?

I had a play with their GUI builder, and it was interesting..

I like their widgets, but I was strugging a bit to see how I'd build a nice GUI that wasn't 'touch'.

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Offline tsman

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #1 on: July 22, 2018, 07:04:58 am »
Do we think this means TouchGFX will become free when used on certain STM32 chips?
That would be my guess. It'll become a free benefit like TrueStudio for using STM32 chips. They've already discontinued support for other microcontrollers as the supported hardware list only shows STM32 parts now.
 

Offline carl0s

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #2 on: July 22, 2018, 07:14:17 am »
Do we think this means TouchGFX will become free when used on certain STM32 chips?
That would be my guess. It'll become a free benefit like TrueStudio for using STM32 chips. They've already discontinued support for other microcontrollers as the supported hardware list only shows STM32 parts now.

Looking forward to it. StEmWin sort of looks a bit dated in comparison.

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Online luiHS

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #3 on: July 22, 2018, 07:31:05 am »
 
Very interesting.

I have a new design with STM32F7 and TouchGFX to make a video player. The Discovery Evaluation Boards of STM32F746 and 769 are delivered with a demonstration of a video player based on TouchGFX. I do not know if it is open source, but I suspect that they are only for demonstration purposes, not complete for free use.

So, if ST has now acquired TouchGFX, it is possible that they will release everything for free as they did with ATOLLIC TrueStudio.

 :scared: :scared: :scared: :scared:
« Last Edit: July 22, 2018, 07:34:04 am by luiHS »
 

Offline carl0s

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #4 on: July 22, 2018, 07:44:55 am »

Very interesting.

I have a new design with STM32F7 and TouchGFX to make a video player. The Discovery Evaluation Boards of STM32F746 and 769 are delivered with a demonstration of a video player based on TouchGFX. I do not know if it is open source, but I suspect that they are only for demonstration purposes, not complete for free use.

So, if ST has now acquired TouchGFX, it is possible that they will release everything for free as they did with ATOLLIC TrueStudio.

 :scared: :scared: :scared: :scared:

Yep! Hope so :-)
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Offline Kjelt

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #5 on: July 22, 2018, 08:47:30 am »
Would be nice!
Probably only the STM32 precompiled library will be free to protect the source code but that is still good enough to use it for some fancy stuff.
ST is actively making their toolsuite sexy and up to date, looking forward to the future.
 

Offline carl0s

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2018, 09:03:18 am »
Would be nice!
Probably only the STM32 precompiled library will be free to protect the source code but that is still good enough to use it for some fancy stuff.
ST is actively making their toolsuite sexy and up to date, looking forward to the future.

I may be wrong about this.. hopefully a competent programmer will be along, but I am learning this stuff at the moment (currently on StEmWin) and I noticed that the debugger in TrueStudio fails to return any source for any of the StEmWin GUI stuff..

Basically, I guess, because you are provided a binary-blob pre-compiled for various specific ST chips, you don't get the source, therefore you lose a lot of debugging ability.

Still, it sure beats trying to build your own GUI library from scratch :)
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Offline carl0s

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #7 on: July 22, 2018, 10:59:08 pm »
The Discovery Evaluation Boards of STM32F746 and 769 are delivered with a demonstration of a video player based on TouchGFX. I do not know if it is open source, but I suspect that they are only for demonstration purposes, not complete for free use.

On my discovery, the TouchGFX demo is a pre-compiled binary. No source at all.
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Offline Kjelt

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #8 on: July 22, 2018, 11:11:22 pm »
Quote from: carl0s
Basically, I guess, because you are provided a binary-blob pre-compiled for various specific ST chips, you don't get the source, therefore you lose a lot of debugging ability.
It is indeed a precompiled library where you can assume it is pretty bugfree or maintained so you can issue a bugreport.
Actually the same as if you program on a OS like Windows, you don't get the source either  :D
If you have issues 9 to 10 it is your code you use the API wrong or have limited resources etc.
 
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Offline carljrb

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #9 on: July 23, 2018, 04:39:40 am »
I really hope it'll be made free for STM32 too.

ST is actively making their toolsuite sexy and up to date, looking forward to the future.
Same! STM32 is quickly becoming my favorite MCU. Not only the software part is better overall (there's a bunch of other cool things like audio weaver, or X-CUBE-VS4A if you're into that alexa stuff), but the hardware itself is great. I've used several other ARM Cortex M MCUs (LPC Series, Kinetis, MSP432, Tiva C...) and STM32 is quickly getting ahead of the pack. My main MCU for the last while has been the Tiva C series which is an M4F but it's getting a bit limited for what I do. The STM32 has M7 parts, and price-wise its a much better value too.

Here's a simple, quick comparison between my "usual" TM4C1294NCPDT and the STM32F769BI, which does cost 10% more:
-M4F @ 120MHz vs M7 @ 216MHz; the M7 is about 50% faster at the same clock speed to begin with so it's a big gain (also supports double precision FP)
-1MB vs 2MB flash
-256KB vs 512KB RAM
-90 vs 140 GPIO -- more GPIOs which are also faster and more which are 5V tolerant
-20x12b (2x 2MSPS) vs 24x12b ADC (3x 2.4MSPS)
-2x CAN 2.0B bus vs 3x CAN 2.0B bus + also LIN (for automotive-style networking; STM32H7 also gets CAN-FD)
-1x USB OTG vs 2x USB OTG
-8x UART vs 8x U(S)ART
-10x I2C vs 4x -- the only place STM32 loses, but being a shared bus it's not a big deal IMO
-4x QSPI vs 6x QSPI which for flash also supports DDR transfers + dual flash so much faster, and also XIP
-both have 10/100 ethernet
-both have similar 16/32 bit timer features
-nothing vs 2x 12b DAC
-nothing vs MMC/SD/SDIO interfaces
-nothing vs 3x I2S and 2x SAI (supports PCM, TDM, DFSDM, SPDIF, AC97...) for audio
-nothing vs LCD interface + MIPI DSI interface (for "mobile" LCDs, can also support HDMI) + Chrom-ART accelerator (with DMA) + HW JPEG Codec for HMIs (with free STEmWin and maybe TouchGFX soon too)
-nothing vs support for various "consumer" protocols like HDMI-CEC, DCMI for cameras, etc.

So: more than double the speed, double the flash, double the RAM, ~50% more GPIOs, better peripherals overall, and it absolutely destroys the Tiva C when it comes to audio or graphics... The benefits are very clear too. The faster core better for real-time DSP work (all those biquads!), more memory is useful for ping-pong buffers (for input/output via DMA)/processing FFTs/frame buffers, etc. I also prefer atollic truestudio to CCS, and CubeMX to PinMux... HAL isn't perfect, but neither is Tivaware (things like different clock functions for different devices e.g. SysCtlClockGet working on TM4C123x but not on TM4C129x) Oh, and the USB DFU mode is nice too (vs having to use LMFlash for updates via USB )
« Last Edit: July 23, 2018, 02:07:08 pm by carljrb »
 

Offline Navarro

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #10 on: July 28, 2018, 08:38:13 am »
STM32 is already my favorite MCU and now with this new acquisition will become even more.

I hope one day we're going to open STM32CubeMX and them, select our pre-designed GUI, our tools and simply program with Atollic which also was a really good acquisition too.

Well done ST! Well done! (If library became free, of course)
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Offline carl0s

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #11 on: December 06, 2018, 01:49:26 am »
FYI TouchGFX appears to now be included for free as part of CubeMX. Woohoo!
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Offline krho

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #12 on: December 06, 2018, 05:01:06 am »
Unfortunately TouchGFX is probably useless for a lot of things. Most of the screens (backgrounds, buttons etc)are must be pre-rendered. You need to add QSPI flash for UI. It takes a lot of CPU time to achieve 60fps for animations etc.
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #13 on: December 06, 2018, 05:09:03 am »
Unfortunately TouchGFX is probably useless for a lot of things. Most of the screens (backgrounds, buttons etc)are must be pre-rendered. You need to add QSPI flash for UI. It takes a lot of CPU time to achieve 60fps for animations etc.
If you want 60fps animation I would not select an STM32.
 

Offline krho

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #14 on: December 06, 2018, 05:13:05 am »
I'm just listing the known requirements/issues.
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #15 on: December 06, 2018, 05:29:35 am »
Ok but be realistic.
If you look at industrial control applications with touchscreen, very few do fancy animations, it only distracts and eats memory like a mouse eats cheese.
I think it is fantastic that this is now integrated with Cube for free.
 

Offline krho

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #16 on: December 06, 2018, 04:48:51 pm »
And that's the problem... This is only for industrial use, where you have a few pre-rendered screens or home appliances, e.g washing machine, stove etc.
If you want to build a handheld device which looks modern, and has a 8h+ battery autonomy outside on the sun it's useless.
 

Offline Kjelt

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #17 on: December 06, 2018, 06:52:09 pm »
And that's the problem... This is only for industrial use, where you have a few pre-rendered screens or home appliances, e.g washing machine, stove etc.
If you want to build a handheld device which looks modern, and has a 8h+ battery autonomy outside on the sun it's useless.
Again you don't want a Cortex M processor for that, look at all the devices out there if you need processing power and graphical power you use different ARM multicores. You buy a Ferrari to drive >200km/h on a track but not to get lumber parts from the hardware store. You buy a pickup truck to get lumber not to driver >200km/h on a track
 

Online Rasz

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #18 on: December 07, 2018, 03:29:52 am »
And that's the problem... This is only for industrial use, where you have a few pre-rendered screens or home appliances, e.g washing machine, stove etc.
If you want to build a handheld device which looks modern, and has a 8h+ battery autonomy outside on the sun it's useless.
Again you don't want a Cortex M processor for that, look at all the devices out there if you need processing power and graphical power you use different ARM multicores. You buy a Ferrari to drive >200km/h on a track but not to get lumber parts from the hardware store. You buy a pickup truck to get lumber not to driver >200km/h on a track

Funny you mention cars, because thats where some of those chips end up/will end up. Brand spanking new Jaguar ipace has framedrops in the dash LCD screens because someone in India thought underpowered microcontrollers are good enough for something as simple as climate control UI.
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Offline krho

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #19 on: December 07, 2018, 04:13:00 am »
You can't use modern smart phone like SOC with 3-4W consumption on a handheld device which needs to be sunlight readable and have 8h+ battery autonomy. This would require such a big battery that it would no longer be handheld.
 

Offline NiHaoMike

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #20 on: December 09, 2018, 01:10:51 am »
You can't use modern smart phone like SOC with 3-4W consumption on a handheld device which needs to be sunlight readable and have 8h+ battery autonomy. This would require such a big battery that it would no longer be handheld.
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Offline diyaudio

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #21 on: December 09, 2018, 02:41:16 am »
Now I can finally make a Google Nest clone.  :) Jokes aside, really great move from ST this will open much better open community projects in the future.
 

Offline carl0s

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #22 on: December 19, 2018, 10:12:56 am »
I'm excited. Hopefully I'll have time to get back into the MCU learning stuff next year. Seem to have diverted off into web app development. Quasar FTW.

I have the STM32 L4 smart watch dev board and I made (see 'my first PCB' thread on here) an adapter to fit a much larger round LCD to it. I see great potential with ToughGFX and STM32 L4 for clock/dial/gauge devices. Think Nest home controller, Amazon Echo Spot, Motorsport multi-gauge, etc.
« Last Edit: December 19, 2018, 10:27:15 am by carl0s »
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Online luiHS

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #23 on: January 06, 2019, 10:25:19 am »
I'm excited. Hopefully I'll have time to get back into the MCU learning stuff next year. Seem to have diverted off into web app development. Quasar FTW.

I have the STM32 L4 smart watch dev board and I made (see 'my first PCB' thread on here) an adapter to fit a much larger round LCD to it. I see great potential with ToughGFX and STM32 L4 for clock/dial/gauge devices. Think Nest home controller, Amazon Echo Spot, Motorsport multi-gauge, etc.

Hi.
Very interesting, I also have several projects, one with a round MIPI DSI screen.

Have you already tried the TouchGFX for free? I suppose that the product is finally 100% free, after it was purchased by ST, at least I downloaded and executed the TouchGFX Designer for free, and all the source code of the Evaluation boards with STM32F769 and STM32F746. I am interested in exactly the source code to play MJPEG videos using an STM32F769 that is part of the examples that come with the discovery evaluation boards for F7, since I downloaded it from the internet and I am studying it to extract only the part that plays videos.

For this new year I want to work again with some of my old pending projects to make a video player with STM32F769 microcontrollers and MIPI DSI displays (some rectangular and others round). Until then I only saw the possibility of using a Raspberry, but I prefer to be able to make a more compact product, economical and without dependence on Raspberry. Using an STM32F769, STM32F779 or STM32F746, I can make very compact and powerful video player, using hardware JPEG decoding to play MJPEG files and integrated interfaces for MIPI DSI screens.

Has anyone already made use of TouchGFX since it is totally free?

One question I have is whether it should be used with TouchGFX Designer, or better to do it with Cubemx.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2019, 10:27:00 am by luiHS »
 

Offline ebclr

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Re: ST acquires TouchGFX company Draupner Graphics
« Reply #24 on: January 07, 2019, 11:12:30 am »
^^TouchGFX comes in binary form as part of STM32Cube software packages.
It is a free tool for production and redistribution on STM32 microcontrollers.^
 


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