Basics project 085b Ai Thinker A6 GSM GPRS module – How to upload firmware


Basics: Project 085b

Project name:  Ai Thinker A6 GSM GPRS module – How to upload firmware

Tags: A6 GSM GPRS module, GSM GPRS module, A6, Ai Thinker, Upload firmware

Attachments: none

In this project, you needed these parts (Dear visitors. You can support our project buy clicking on the links of parts and buying them or donate us to keep this website alive. Thank you):

1. Ai Thinker A6 GSM GPRS module 1 pc

A6 GSM GPRS module

2. USB to TTL/Serial adaptor/converter 1 pc

USB to TTL converters
USB TO TTL converters

4. Jumper cables F-F

a6

5. Micro USB cable 1 pc

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6. Micro SIM card 1 pc (unlocked)

A6

7. GSM GPRS antenna 1 pc

8. 5 VDC 2A power wall adapter 1pc

A6

General

We will learn in this project how to upload firmware to the Ai Thinker A6 GSM GPRS module.

Understanding the USB to TTL converter

You can read more about them here.

Understanding the A6 GSM GPRS module

You can read more about it here.

You can find A6 datasheet, manuals, AT commands, schematics here.

Signals and connections of the A6 GSM GPRS module

A6 GPS/GPRS IC pinout:

A6 IC
A6 GSM GPRS module

EN – module power control enable pin (can control power switch, default high level enable)

VCC_IN – External power supply (3.4V-4.2V ) maximum power supply current 2A

PWR – used for turning module ON/OFF programmatically. For doing this you must pull it HIGH for a moment (less than 500 ms or around).

INT – used to control the module to enter low-power mode, high exit low level access, in this mode the standby current <1mA ( in this mode the serial port cannot be used)

GND – ground pin. this module has 2 ground pins

U_RXD – serial port for AT commands (receive pin)

U_TXD – serial port for AT commands (transmit pin)

H_TXD – firmware update pin (transmit pin), pin power level 2.8V

H_RXD – firmware update pin (receive pin), pin power level 2.8V

R232_TX – RS232 level control (transmit pin)

R232_RX – RS232 level control (receive pin)

MIC- – microphone –

MIC+ – microphone+

REC- – loudspeaker –

REC+ – loudspeaker +

Wiring

1.Firmware update

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2.Using USB to TTL converter

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You should be very careful to not to disconnect the GND before the VCC and always connect GND before VCC. Otherwise the module can use the low voltage serial pins as ground and can get destroyed instantly.

Step by Step instruction

VERY IMPORTANT NOTE:

Before doing firmware update:

  • Follow the steps as described above. Check your module firmware version. Enter “AT+GMR” and press Send button.  For example we have – V03.05.20170724017H17 .
  • Always make sure that you have your firmware version on hands so you can restore previous version if next firmware version is bad.
  • Read all information about firmware update available on Web.
  • Just think if you really need to do it as it is a risk to damage the module!!!
  • If you decided to do it make sure that the next firmware version which you are planing to upload is not older than existing.
  • Firmware download link: GPRS firmware release.
  • Be careful to connect your USB-To-serial module on the H_TXD and H_RXD pins instead of the U_TXD and U_RXD pins of the A6 GSM GPRS module.

Firmwares:

  1. Do wiring for firmware update.
  2. Plug your USB to TTL converter into your PC USB port.
  3. Download the latest firmware file(development version a6-v03.06.20171127r.zip ) and unzip it (A6-V03.06.20171127R.afw).
  4. Download the AI thinker GSM and GPS download tool v02.01.01.
  5. Unzip the firmwarw_tool_v2.1.7z package and launch fpupgrade.exe.
  6. Select the latest firmware file which you want to upload to the A6 GSM GPRS module.
  7. Power up the A6 GSM GPRS module with the 5V DC 2A external power supply through the Micro USB port. The AI thinker GSM and GPS download tool should detect the COM port automatically (We have COM 8).
  8. Click on Start button.
  9. After 22-23 seconds, the firmware should be flashed! When a download finished click on Stop button and then click on Exit button to close the AI thinker GSM and GPS download tool. Let’s check the firmware in A6 GSM GPRS module now.
  10. Power off the A6 GSM GPRS module.
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2. Checking the firmware version of the A6 GSM GPRS module with USB to TTL converter

For using this USB to UART Converter you need a software tool. Most of the development tools like MikroC Pro, Arduino has a UART Tool along with it. You can use different software tools: TerminalUSR-TCP232-Test V1.4AiThinker_Serial_Tool_V1.2.3cooltermsscom3.2 , KiTTYputty,tera termAccess port and so on. We recommend you to use AiThinker_Serial_Tool_V1.2.3 or sscom3.2, as you can save your AT commands and it’s very easy to use.

  1. Do wiring for Using USB to TTL converter.
  2. Power up the A6 GSM GPRS module with the 5V DC 2A external power supply through the Micro USB port.
  3. Plug your USB to TTL converter into your PC USB port.
  4. Set the baud rate on 57600 (our A6 GSM GPRS module responded on 57600 but your module can respond on other bound rate – try other baud rates), data bits 8, parity bits none,stop bits one and click on Open Serial button.
  5. First you need to check if AT commands are working – enter “AT” and press  Send button.This would print “OK” which signifies of working connection and operation of the module.
  6. Requests TA revision identification. Enter “AT+GMR” and press Send button. Returns “V03.06.20171127R OK”. This is the firmware version.
  7. Change that baud rate to 9600. Enter “AT+IPR=9600” and press Send button. Returns “OK”. It is 9600 bps now.
  8. Click on Close serial button. Set the baud rate on 9600 , data bits 8, parity bits none,stop bits one and click on Open Serial button.
  9. First you need to check if AT commands are working – enter “AT” and press  Send button.This would print “OK” which signifies of working connection and operation of the module.
  10. Requests TA revision identification. Enter “AT+GMR” and press Send button. Returns “V03.06.20171127R OK”. This is the firmware version.
  11. Checks fixed local rate. Enter “AT+IPR?” and press Send button. Returns “+IPR: 9600 OK” /9600 bps/
  12. Congrats!!!
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Summary

We have learnt how to upload firmware to the Ai Thinker A6 GSM GPRS module.

Thank you for reading and supporting us.

Libraries:

  • None

Project resources:

  • See attachments on the beginning of this project description

AcoptexCom

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