Today, every mobile application has the ability to communicate using the Bluetooth Low Energy protocol. From wireless head phones to wireless grilling meat thermometers, Bluetooth is everywhere. Not only is it widely used in many consumer applications, but it is also appearing in IoT products for its ability to connect applications with mobile devices, anywhere.
Are you using Bluetooth for communication in your Internet of Things application? If you are, then kudos to you! If you are not, you’re missing out on time, energy, and efficiency savings for IoT.
Not to mention the fact that Bluetooth is one of the fastest growing connectivity methods, and today the use cases span every every industry. Be sure to sign up for our newsletter to learn about our growing collection of Bluetooth products and related content.
Meet the Digi XBee Mobile SDK for Bluetooth
Digi XBee® Mobile SDK (Software Development Kit) is a set of libraries, code examples and documentation designed to simplify the process of creating iOS and Android mobile apps that interact with Digi XBee 3 modules via Bluetooth.
Digi developed the Digi XBee Mobile SDK to help customers design and build Bluetooth applications and reduce the time spent in development. Adding Bluetooth to an IoT application adds tremendous value to commissioning, configuration and troubleshooting a network. But creating a mobile app to integrate your IoT application and mobile device can be tricky, with complex authentication and encryption, design of a Bluetooth-enabled mobile app. The Digi XBee Mobile SDK provides the support to simplify and expedite those processes.
Use Cases for Bluetooth Integration in IoT Applications
Bluetooth in IoT can be leveraged for multiple use cases. Here are just a few examples of how Bluetooth can support employees who are performing monitoring tasks out in the field:
- Rideshare application: Workers have to go around and collect rental items from around the city. They can use Bluetooth to go to each item in the application and do a check on the batteries supporting bike lights, for example.
- Building tech: Workers are tasked with ensuring that building lights are functioning well. They can review how all of the lights on the Zigbee network are functioning via Bluetooth.
- Solar field: In a solar field, there are typically radio modules in each solar panel. A worker can take a reading to assess current values, productivity or need for service.
If you are developing mobile IoT applications with Digi XBee, the SDK can support your development goals. For example, you can use Bluetooth to simplify commissioning or troubleshooting out in the field. Using the Bluetooth functionality built into Digi XBee products, a technician can easily connect to a Digi XBee with a mobile device to test, set, or read parameters during network deployment.
Another helpful use case enabled by Bluetooth in an IoT application is the ability to create a communication channel to create a Human Machine Interface (HMI) on a phone or tablet for monitoring and controlling a device that doesn’t have a display.
As an example, imagine a scenario where you are trying to read sensor values on an IoT device, but the device doesn’t have a screen, so you don’t have a way to read the values. You can easily connect to the IoT device using a Bluetooth-enabled mobile device (such as a tablet or smart phone) and display settings on the mobile device’s screen.
What’s Included in the Digi XBee Mobile SDK?
The Digi XBee Mobile SDK includes the following resources to help speed up the development of mobile applications that interact with Digi XBee devices over the Bluetooth Low Energy interface.
The software libraries are a set of well-documented APIs that reduce the effort needed to develop a mobile app to communicate with Digi XBee devices. They provide high-level abstraction methods that handle the complexity of the authentication, encryption and communication processes.
Digi provides two easy-to-use libraries that simplify the development of these mobile applications:
- Digi XBee library for Xamarin, to develop native cross-platform (iOS and Android) mobile applications using C#
- Digi XBee library for Android, to develop native Android applications using Java.
Bluetooth Application Examples
Each library of the SDK includes a complete set of examples that showcase the Bluetooth interface capabilities of the Digi XBee device and how to integrate them in a mobile application.
More examples have been added to other Digi XBee libraries, such as the Python and Java libraries, to complement the functionality provided by the SDK.
Digi XBee Mobile SDK Documentation
Digi also provides complete documentation that explains the use of the APIs and answers any outstanding questions that are not covered with the examples.
Access to the software libraries, examples, and documentation can be found on Digi’s support site.
>> Looking for design or engineering help with your IoT application development? Contact our Wireless Design Services team.