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Topic: Best way to interface PC to arduino (Read 22163 times) previous topic - next topic


I was thinking about it more and in the technical sense, there is more there than semantics.

If you connect a BlueTooth dongle (or already have it built in) and there is no device in range that it is paired with, there is no serial port provided by it for you to open. When you have a Bluetooth serial device available, the BlueTooth part of it is invisible to you from a connection POV; it's like that connection is directly to the device at the other end.

However if you have a single xBee on a USB explorer, you will have a serial port available to open and the xBee will be visible to you to communicate with if you need to change settings or whatever.

Interestingly enough, they are extremely similar on the Arduino side. Both are serial devices that are always accessible and visible to you and you can communicate with the BlueTooth module even if it isn't paired.

The reason I think it is more than semantics is that the bar is a little higher as far as understanding communications and implementing protocols to get the high level of functionality available from the xBees. To use Bluetooth you don't have to understand how the data gets there, just the steps to set up a partnerships so that sometimes the data will get there (yeah, I have had issues with Bluetooth reliability). To use the xBees, you will likely need a higher level of understanding.

But yes, we agree that for most wireless Arduino applications xBees will make more sense.


Dec 11, 2010, 02:55 am Last Edit: Dec 11, 2010, 02:58 am by focalist Reason: 1
Well, there's my lesson for the day.  Overall, I would have thought bluetooth to be a more mature and reliable technology.  I know there's range issues, but I had assumed with the module I had linked to, it would be as simple as a generic pairing and from then forward it would be functionally the same as a "regular" serial COM port.

I knew xbee could be set up this way, but I thought it to be the inferior (for no good reason, I just thought bluetooth was the obvious solution and others for the most part would be wannabe's).  Score one for marketing, I guess.  So, a proper xbee solution is two transceivers, and is the "right" way to do it.. even if costly.  A pair is something like $50-60, yes?

I really want to add wireless to my Boarduino, as I blew up my Max232 cable jobbie, so I've got to use ISP, with Arduino as programmer, if I want to use it (until I replace the max232 with something).  I'd been looking and hoping that a bluetooth-to-TTL link link might be as easy as that $14 board... should have known better ;)

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