Ultra low cost microcontrollers

A project log for 1 dollar TinyML

Can we build Machine Learning enabled sensor for under 1 USD?

jon-nordbyJon Nordby 01/20/2024 at 01:010 Comments

If the complete BOM for sensor is to be under 1 USD, the microcontroller needs to be way below this. Preferably below 25% in order to leave budget for sensors, power and communication.

Thankfully, there have been a lot of improvements in this area over the last years. Looking at, we can find some interesting candidates:

There are also a very few sub-1 USD microcontrollers that have integrated wireless connectivity.

Implications for 1 dollar TinyML project

It looks like if we budget 10-20 cents USD to the microcontroller, then we get around:

At this price point the WCH CH32V003 or the Puya PY32F003x6 look like the most attractive options. Both have decent support in the open community. WCH CH32 can be targetted with cnlohr/ch32v003fun and Puya with py32f0-template.

What kind of ML tasks can we manage to perform on such a small CPU? That is the topic for the next steps.