​o, the interesting little ESP8266 WiFi SoC finally has a younger brother which appears to be even more capable. Among other interesting updates, the 32 bit Dual Core microcontroller still supports WiFi, but also Bluetooth Low Energy, a DAC, many more ADCs, GPIO pins, etc. etc. Lots of good details here: http://esp32.net/
The ESP32 is now avaialble to buy directly as a chip, or on small development boards. Unfortunately however, everywhere is currently sold out, so it will be a while before I get one.
The feature which particularly piqued my interest, however was the mention of CAN 2.0 support. I have already used the ESP8266 in combination with an MCP2515 to create a CAN to Wifi gateway, but if the ESP32 supports CAN on board, then this could potentially lead to a single chip solution.
There are already a number of other microcontroller which do offer CAN bus support (actually the list is probably huge since nearly all automotive and industrial spec controllers will) but for example the Arduio Due (Atmel SAM3X8E ARM Cortex- M3 CPU) and the Teensy development boards support CAN.
However, most lf these chips simply support the CAN data link later rather than the physical layer, and so still require a CAN transceiver to do the voltage conversion to CAN compatible physical voltage levels. To be honest, I expect the ESP32 to require the same, although it would be great if it was on board.
So far i haven’t managed to find any now details on the cab bus interface. I have read through the data sheets for the chip, but they only mention the CAN support in one line and as a single block on the system block diagram.
This forum thread sheds slightly more information onto the situation with a response from Rudi of expressif regarding the integration of the CAN connections. He sends to suggest that the can will be suggested through normal GPIO pins which would suggest that they might not be compatible with the higher voltage that CAN bus physical layer typically requires.