BLE Communications with PC

Hi Guys,

I'm using a Blufruit Feather NRF52. I am hoping to collect sensor data using the Feather and send it via Bluetooth to a windows 10 PC. I can get the PC to pair with the feather but that is pretty much it. I am unsure as to how i will transmit and receive the sensor data. I read somewhere that BLE devices cant be use to transmit data to be picked up on the serial monitor. Is this true?

Essentially i am asking how can i send sensor data from a Bluefruit feather to a PC to be used by other programs?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Have tried contacting Adafruit ?

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kilkenny31: I read somewhere that BLE devices cant be use to transmit data to be picked up on the serial monitor. Is this true?

Yes. The serial monitor cannot operate through a bluetooth port. This is not a problem. All you need do is use a proper terminal programme, like RealTerm instead. There are others, all free. The serial monitor is fine for debugging purposes, and you don't need bluetooth for that, but that is all it is for and, if you are serious about data aquisition, a proper terminal is a better proposition irrespective of whether you are using bluetooth or cable.

Thanks for your reply. Do you know if there is an example programme that I could use to transmit a string of data from the feather via Bluetooth. The problem I have at the moment is that I am using a 4.0 Bluetooth adaptor. I use the sample adafruit programme on arduino that I added using adafruits guidebook. But none of these programmes seem to send a string to be picked up by a terminal. Also i am able to detect the feather on my pc but unable to add it as a com port. I know the steps required to do this but cant add the feather.

kilkenny31: Thanks for your reply. Do you know if there is an example programme that I could use to transmit a string of data from the feather via Bluetooth.

In the normal world of Arduino and Bluetooth, i.e. a Uno and HC-0x, the following is all you need.

void setup() {
Serial.begin(9600);
}

void loop() {
Serial.println("hello");
delay(1000);
}

but I have now had a look at this feather thingy, and I'm afraid I realise I am out of order. The above code may work for you, but I suspect it won't. If you want to try it, I recommend sending to an Android phone.

  1. I can hardly believe it, but a quick look at the blurb suggests this device is for Android or macStuff only. You need to check for an application that is specifically for Windows. I repeat I can't believe it, but the is a faint possibility that you have the wrong module. In that event, there is surely a Feather for Windows, but I know nothing about Feathers.

  2. While my comments about the serial monitor are correct, you may need a windows programme specifically for use with bluetooth BLE, rather than a standard terminal programme. You may even need one specifically for Feather. I had heard of this before and thought I had misunderstood it, but I had already concluded that BLE was more trouble than it was worth and had never pursued this point.

  3. I withdraw

, and you don't need bluetooth for that

in my previous. It is not necessarily correct for Feathers, and may add to the confusion!

I'm not familiar with Lady Ada but their guides are certainly comprehensive and, as suggested by ieee488, you should be able to get what you need there.

Again thanks for your reply. I'm beginning to wonder if the feather is the best board for my application. My application was to attach a sensor like and MPU6050 to a persons arm or leg and send that data via Bluetooth to a PC where the data would be used with another program. The reason for picking the feather was its size but I'm thinking i may need a standard Bluetooth arduniO device i.e a non BLE device.

I have been able to use the feather with the app on my phone but not with the PC.

I have been able to use the feather with the app on my phone but not with the PC.

Clearly, the "with the app on" bit is important. What app on the PC are you trying to communicate with?

PaulS: Clearly, the "with the app on" bit is important. What app on the PC are you trying to communicate with?

I am not using any app on the PC. There's a BETA version of an APP for windows but i am unable to get it running. It appears to provide similar functionality to the Android app. Which is good for sending data to the Feather but its difficult to understand how to send a strings of data from the feather.

I am essentially looking for a way to send X,Y,Z values from a accelerometer/gyro which is connected to the Bluefruit Feather nRF52 to a PC. These value will then be used by Pure Data to generate sound.

If it works for the app on your smartphone but not with the beta app on the Windows PC, the Feather is not the problem! Until you understand this, you will be spinning your wheels forever.

.

If it works for the app on your smartphone but not with the beta app on the Windows PC, the Feather is the problem. Your objective is to use Windows, so get something that works with Windows, not some half-arsed beta. These devices are rather interesting, what with their greater performance and on-board battery facility, but seem limited in application, which is something I don't understand but the fact that a Windows version is in beta indicates a problem. This to the point where you need to ascertain that Pure Data will work with ANY BLE device. While I'm sure plenty of others get what they want from it, I was not being flippant when I said I found BLE more trouble than it was worth. I know nothing about Pure Data but, if it will accept input from a serial port, you can bet it will work with a plain-vanilla Arduino, with an equally plain-vanilla HC-05, and that Arduino can have similar form to the Feather.

Thank you, i’m beginning to think that it may be better to use a standard Arduino and Bluetooth module. As I have already used Pure Data with values coming via serial monitor. I agree when you say BLE seems to be more trouble then its worth.

Nick_Pyner: If it works for the app on your smartphone but not with the beta app on the Windows PC, the Feather is the problem.

Why do you say that?

I don't trust anything in beta.

The beta app in Windows is the problem.

The app is exclusive to Feather. See reply #4.

Nick_Pyner: The app is exclusive to Feather. See reply #4.

I realize that they have iOS and Android apps.

I am talking about the beta Windows app. As far as I can tell that didn't come from Adafruit.

Remember it is his Windows 10 PC he is having problems with, not the smartphone app. That works fine.

Another thought: The PC has a BLE dongle right?

.

I can read too. And I'm guessing you may be right, the beta didn't come from Adafruit. I believe Ada only link this module to IOS and Android, hence reply#4. Therefore, if you want to use windows, you have a problem clearly signalled, and the problem is that you have the wrong version of Feather - and I don't know if there is a right version. Further, in view of the fact that there is a problem, it may be only the first problem, hence my comment about ensuring Pure Data is kosher for use with BLE, and reply #10 doesn't surprise me.

Nick_Pyner: I can read too. And I'm guessing you may be right, the beta didn't come from Adafruit. I believe Ada only link this module to IOS and Android, hence reply#4. Therefore, if you want to use windows, you have a problem clearly signalled, and the problem is that you have the wrong module. Further, in view of the fact that there is a problem, it may be only the first problem, hence my comment about ensuring Pure Data is kosher for use with BLE, and reply #10 doesn't surprise me.

I am not convinced that it is as simple as the OP not having a BLE dongle on his Windows 10 PC. :confused:

The OP may have assumed that his PC's Bluetooth is BLE but really isn't. Wouldn't surprise me in the least.

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I case someone is looking for a solution to this same issue, connecting to a PC using an arduino board paired with an Adafruit BLE, this website appears to have good information. I'm currently waiting for a USB BLE adapter to prove out it works, but this website has the clearest info I've found on the matter. https://www.instructables.com/id/Wireless-Serial-Communication-Using-Bluefruit/