Main Site Documentation

BLE Class Library for BLE support targeted to .NET Micro Framework


#1

Found this yesterday on CodePlex. Very interesting :slight_smile: Ordered a module as well:

[quote]Although every BLE chip available on the market can be driven through HCI API, it turns out that a remarkable part of such API is vendor specific, so several library “flavors” should be developed in order to provide true BLE chip independence. Currently, this library provides support only for TI CC254x BLE chips (with BLE Stack firmware version 1.4) driven through UART interface. In order to take advantage of this library you have to get one of compliant hardware boards/modules (plenty available on ebay, alibaba, etc) and flash/program the “right” firmware image (there are different images for central and peripheral profiles and also for specific pinout configurations matching targeted hardware board/module, since TI CC254x chips have 2 UART ports each allowing several alternate pinouts for same functions).
[/quote]


#2

@ andre.m - Well, I think this time I was late to the party :slight_smile: I ordered other BLE modules as well. Will test deeply. Justins module as well.


#3

I’d note that many of the BLE modules around implement a different firmware and behave quite differently to the way the BLE stack intends (when discussing generically connecting a BLE device to say a phone or PC). For example, the HM-10 and Justin’s BLE module both implement a pseudo-serial BLE mode where you send data in one side and it appears at the other, so I don’t expect either of these modules will work with this code/driver.


#4

@ Brett - Thanks for pointing that out. Will try both modules and test them. Let’s see how it works out for different scenarios. Just started to educate myself on BLE.


#5

My two cents on the promise of BLE, with a focus on the latter two letters - Low Energy. We have yet to see a mainboard that IMO qualifies as ‘low energy’. Some folks have tweaked existing hardware with decent results, but what I would really like to see is a NETMF board designed from the ground up with LE in mind. These modules are nice, but don’t yet have a LE mainboard to plug into. Justin’s watch prototype is probably the farthest along. Any other’s in the works or that I’ve missed?

Rant - It seems like the entire industry has added “BLE capable” to their hardware marketing just because it’s the “new thing”, with very little attention actually given to making it really LE. There are a few that do, but there is a long way to go before the promised nirvana of “running on a coin cell for a year” (or some other such hard to prove statement) is widely reached.


#6

Yes, that promise is mostly nonsense. Maybe a beacon that only broadcasts every 10 seconds or so could achieve this, but hardly any other useful device will do.

We’d better plan for something like a AAA battery and half a year for anything useful.

A couple of years ago we have created a small “mainboard” with a few Gadgeteer sockets. It doesn’t run NETMF, but can be used for prototyping purposes if one is willing to use CSR tools for their CSR1010 SoC. It is the “Marble Mote” board at the top left, besides our BLE Advent Wreath, and our BLE Gadgeteer module that we’ve used for prototyping our Limmat BLE/3G gateway. Whose V1.1 test boards have been successfully produced this morning, I may add :slight_smile:


#7

@ Cuno - I heard even of very “compact” beacons that support up to 5 years of battery life. And if I remember right, I even read about 10 years somewhere :slight_smile: Anyway. I need something to drive my apps and to prototype. Maybe all creators here could stick their heads together and create a module that is the best fit for NETMF and Gadgeteer and make it available to everyone. We need a BLE module (not only me, others as well)- urgently.


#8

Yeees :smiley: If compact means two AA batteries, then that’s true…


#9

@ Cuno - Hahaha :slight_smile: LOL, Yeah, I am convinced now. Just wanted to point that out.


#10

Guys what am I missing.

I plan on using this Nordic nRF51822 for my satellite modules that will transmit sensor data via ble to my main Edison board, for further transport of data to the cloud via wifi.

http://www.nordicsemi.com/eng/Products/nRF51-DK

I am new to the arena, so please pop by bubble if I am heading down the wrong track. The nRF51 chip seems to be very LE.

Thanks for your input.

Terrence


#11

The Nordic is a good chip, and certainly quite low energy. But this still doesn’t mean that it will run for years on a coin cell.

Sending takes a lot of power. Receiving takes less power, but is done more or less continuously. Except for something like beacons, where you don’t need to receive at all.

There are parameters (e.g. advertisement interval) that allow you to trade off power consumption and the latency for opening a connection.


#12

Cuno, thanks for those tips.
Terrence