A Belarussian, who is selling me a couple of 868MHz XBee S5s has offered me an XBee development board, XBIB-U-DEV.
There is another variant
There is very little difference between the XBIB-U and XBIB-U-DEV. Really the only difference is that the -DEV is a Development board which has additional switches, LED’s and test points over the XBIB-U. Otherwise they are the same product and offer the same general function with respect to the UART and your ability to upload firmware via them.
Other support questions.
USB power issue
One issue with the boards, which is worthy of note, is that certain boards, fabricated prior to 23/2/2015, have an issue when power solely by USB:
Some Digi XBee® development board kits were confirmed to exhibit an inability to enumerate when powered solely from a PC via the USB port. The cause for failure was found to be on the development board (see below Table 1 for affected board versions) where a small variation on the voltage regulator causes some USB circuits to not function properly. This issue can be resolved reliably by using the external power supply supplied in most of the kits. See the resolution detail below for more information. Once a product initially enumerates the product should continue to operate to specification.
Revision E and later, boards are not affected.
To identify the board
See also ERRATA SHEET # 150320
From the support forum, see USB device not recognized.
The Debugger and the SDK
It normally comes together with the board, in the Programmable XBee-PRO ZB Dev Kit, which sells for around $450. However, they are available separately, and may be purchased from from Farnell, for £66, see NXP USBMULTILINKBDME USB-BDM MULTILINK, DEBUGGER / PROG. Also, may be found on eBay for as little as £15.
Take a look at the video, USB Multilink or Cyclone PRO: Which Is Best For My Project?
The debugger is used in conjunction with Codewarrior for Microcontrollers and the Programmable XBee SDK, which are available, along with some other useful downloads, from the XBEE-PRO ZB PROGRAMMABLE DEVELOPMENT KIT support page. The Programmable XBee SDK has a good couple of tutorials, that are run from within CodeWarrior. The tutorial is also available in PDF format. Here is the wiki for Getting Started with Programmable XBee. Here is the Programmable XBee SDK documentation.
Useful forum links
Note that to use the Dev board you need programmable XBee modules, not the general release versions:
The part number should be something like XB24-AWI-001 and will be on the white label on the bottom of the module.
See also XBee®/XBee‐PRO® ZB RF Modules
Do It Yourself?
For a home made evaluation board see My XBee experiments.