So many of us have been happily using in the inexpensive ESP8266 chips for some time now for IOT applications, home control etc and long may that continue. They do have SOME issues – for example they are short of RAM memory to the point that all except critical subroutines have to be stored in FLASH and pulled out when needed. The somewhat slows things down as the 80Mhz processor (160Mhz at a pinch) has to pull stuff out of the external serial FLASH to use it. In practice the ESP8266 is still very fast but this is just one step that would be nice to avoid. Lack of IO lines also is a little painful as so many of the available lines are dual purpose – GPIO0 for example cannot be held low on powerup as it is used to put the processor into programming mode. We get around these issues but wouldn’t it be nice if we didn’t have to.
By the look of it, the upcoming ESP32 will have more RAM (400KB) and more IO (close to 40 !!!) IPV6, a little more expensive – we’re hoping not MUCH more as initially Espressif were saying it would not be more expensive! Bluetooth will be supported, there’s a dual processor (two powerful Tensilica L108 processors), better security, faster WIFI (the WIFI will have it’s own processor hence no more worrying about delays – that’ll be a relief) – and low power. QFN packaging.
All sounds very exciting and thanks to Espressif and readers in here for bringing this to my attention.