the new PIC32MZ-DA microcontroller series with integrated 32 MB DRAM (or 128 MB external DRAM) and LCD controller look quite nice. However, the official development boards from Microchip tend to be quite expensive (more than $100).
Are there any plans for an Olimex board using one of these chips?
Odd, isn't it? ST produce all those great cheap dev boards but Mchp price things high.
I wonder why so many people move to ST - or Raspberry Pi (also cheap).
Or Olimex boards but not PIC ones... (have a look at the Allwinner ones)
In my opinion Microchip still produces great PIC32 controllers. Specially for embedded controllers with flexible I/O control they have a very good price/performance ratio. Not everybody wants Linux or some other operating system in the embedded controller. I guess Microchip still offers chances to companies like Olimex to compete with low-cost development boards.
The only real problem is still Harmony :'(
Harmony is a big issue, yes. But also the Mchp PIC32 dev boards are waaayyyy too costly. It means many people learn on other boards - then stay there.
It's a pity as PIC32 has many good points. However, failing to get buy-in is going to leave it languishing.
My point of view: For Olimex it is an advantage that the Microchip development boards are priced very high. Controller cost: $5,--; Microchip development board $100,--; Olimex development board $25,--. Microchip earns their money on the chips; Olimex on their boards.
The only issue is: You got to have a nice development environment, which is accepted by the world and Harmony is not, I guess. Maybe Arduino IDE on top of it, would do ???
Could be, but I expect what actually happens is very low sales since Mchp has put almost everyone off.
The PIC32 has many good points but its owner's pricing of dev boards is not one. (And for the PIC32MZ etc: Harmony is another deterrent.)