5 Applications of Bluetooth / BLE in IoT Solutions

Bluetooth / BLE in IoT Solutions

When mobile first came to the fore little did we know it would change our world forever. I have been always interested in the way data was transferred between two devices; started off with Infrared technology; but it was Bluetooth that caught the attention all over the world. During the last few years the aura around Bluetooth has decreased a bit thanks to the emergence of Wi-Fi hotspot feature.

Bluetooth special interest group has designed an innovative technology called Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) also known as Bluetooth Smart. BLE is basically wireless personal area network technology and is mainly used as one of short range communication protocol in IoT and M2M applications. There are many varieties of BLE modules available with most of them working in peripheral mode and few modules supporting central mode.

Applications of BLE

  • Smart Keys: A mobile app would receive a secret pass code key upon hotel check-in, the user just need to go in front of the hotel room door with their smart phone and it will exchange the pass code securely to the door lock using BLE and open it without any hassle.
  • Event Management : Managing access of huge number of people in a trade show or a concert is no easy task, all they need to be given is a wrist band or ring which the attendee need to flash at the counters to gain access, so no more boring paper invites to be carried on. The BLE module in the wrist band carries the user identity information and the POS machines at the counters connect with a cloud service to authenticate the identity.
  • Retail Shops: As soon as the customer walks in a welcome message would get popped up in their mobile and when they go near the product shelf, details of that would be displayed in their mobile screens. Retail world is trying to find ways of targeted and contextual advertising; BLE technology is definitely an enabler.
  • Bluetooth enabled home appliances: Controlling a device using any other device containing Bluetooth central mode module (Laptops, mobiles etc.).
  • Heart Beat Sensor Apps: Sending real time sensor data to smartphone. With BLE, the communication between sensor and the smartphone consumes less power.


What we have done here

  • We made a simple system which will work according to the commands send from an android app. It controls an LED using smartphone
  • Chatting with PC. A system that will help to chat with PC using your android phone.
  • Configure our BLE as beacon
  • Sending heart beat sensor data to android app
  • We have used “Adafruit Bluefruit LE UART FriendBLE module

Almost all mobile OS now supports BLE and in around two years a major share of the new mobiles in the market will have this innovative feature pre-built in it. In IoT development, BLE is an unavoidable component in short range communication.

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