Bluetooth LE Developer Questions

Here are the top questions we get asked as a Bluetooth LE developer:

  • For apps, can the app work without Bluetooth and location on?
    No. There’s no special OS mechanism on iOS nor Android that uses Bluetooth LE without the user having Bluetooth and location on. Many users leave Bluetooth and location on to allow ease of use with cars and audio headphones. Location is also usually one due to use with maps.
  • How does leaving Bluetooth on affect battery life?
    Bluetooth is no longer drains the battery as was the case in the early days of smartphones. It can be left on with negligible extra battery use.
  • What’s the maximum range?
    The range depends most on the Bluetooth device to are connecting to. Most devices, running on battery, work 50m to 100m. Devices with larger batteries, running from mains or USB can work up hundreds of metres. We have a device that works up to 4000m.
  • What SDK should be used?
    Most, but not all, SDKs and 3rd party libraries tend to be poorly implemented/documented, tie your code into using a particular beacon and rarely get updated to use newer mobile platform APIs. We recommend software use the iOS and Android Bluetooth APIs directly to make your code independent of the beacon type and readily able to be updated when the mobile platforms themselves are updated.

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