Bluetooth range/device detector

Hi, bit of a noob, so I apologize if this has been asked an answered.

I've got a raspberry pi and found some software to let me do things like, detect bluetooth devices, get the RSSI/signal strength etc., but I'm more interested in doing something like this with an Arduino since there's more overhead with the pi.

Basically, I want to be able to detect when a certain device is in range and/or what the signal strength of said device (say an iphone) is and make a rough approximation of the distance (not really that important yet). At some distance/strength, have it trigger some thing to do a thing etc.

I got a BLE Shield from RedBearLab (v2.1) but it looks like this isn't what I wanted for my needs, but I'm also having a hard time finding one that is and code to go with it.

What would be the best shield (I've got an Uno R3 - though am not opposed to switching to something else) to use for this - or some other option? Obviously I'd have to do some hard coding for various device ID's, but that can be addressed later.

At least some of the $5 "HC-05" modules seem to have this capability: http://electronics.stackexchange.com/a/98168

I believe that RED Bear ripoff is a slave only device, which is pretty savage when you look at the price.

The HC-05 is a master/slave device and thus has the commands for this sort of thing. I'm not sure how much you are going to get from this and I suspect some peoples' expectations are quite fanciful.

I understand the capability extends to

  1. Is anybody there? - yes/no

  2. Who are you - check my list

  3. Are you closer than the other guy? - yes/no

If you need BLE, I believe the HM-10 has the same characteristics as the HC-05, to the point where it appears to be a direct replacement - and reasonably priced.

If you need BLE, I believe the HM-10 has the same characteristics as the HC-05, to the point where it appears to be a direct replacement - and reasonably priced.

Info found to be aware of concerning HM-10 reviews 11/23/13 (Warning: Lots of vehement expression towards datasheet-writers)

At least some of the $5 "HC-05" modules seem to have this capability:

Please reference module of one that can do this. Preferably one that uses bluetooth 4.0 and/or low power consumption so that it can run off a battery for a reasonable amount of time.

Keep up the great work! Thomas

Thomas499: Info found to be aware of concerning HM-10 reviews 11/23/13 (Warning: Lots of vehement expression towards datasheet-writers)

I believe things have changed since then. I understand the problem was that they kept moving the goalposts. I guess the HM-10 will replace the HC-05 eventually.

Please reference module of one that can do this. Preferably one that uses bluetooth 4.0 and/or low power consumption so that it can run off a battery for a reasonable amount of time.

All HC-05s are the same, that is why they are HC-05s. None are bluetooth 4.

Excellent.

So just to be clear, the only noted differences in the HM-10 and the HC-05 are:

  1. HM-10 uses low power bluetooth4.0
  2. HM-10 can be used with IOS systems(apple devices) as well as the same systems than can be used with HC-05?
  3. HM-10 has less example code posted only because it hasn't been around very long and therefor less popular.
  4. Less people are familiar with HM-10 so help would be easier to acquire using HC-05.

Am I correct?

Essentially correct in all four cases, but I believe in item #

  1. A Bluetooth 4 device only operates in BLE mode if it is connected to another bluetooth 4 device, otherwise it reverts to BT2

  2. Being able work with IOS doesn't mean there is a plethora of IOS apps to work with

  3. HM-10 doesn't get talked about for those reasons, but the code is actually the same.

  4. Same as 3, and not helped by manufacturers muddying the waters and creating plenty of opportunity for misunderstanding. That LetsMakeRobots article could be a case in point, but it might not be(!).

I believe the HM-10 is a drop-in replacement for the HC-05. The data sheets certainly suggest that To this end, I am attempting to cut to the chase by installing a bare HM-10 on a basic backboard for the HC-05. Unfortunately I ordered a pair of ZS-040 boards as they seem to be superceding the JY-MCU but I believe that was a mistake. I was suckered by the little button switch on the ZS-040 and I now don't think they are such a good idea as Arduino can't push the button, only humans.

I raise this point because, while I am skeptical about messing about with RSSI using HC-05s, I suspect it might make a lot more sense with Blutooth 4, simply because they can work over a longer range, thereby possibly presenting greater opportunity for discrimination.

  1. A Bluetooth 4 device only operates in BLE mode if it is connected to another bluetooth 4 device, otherwise it reverts to BT2

  2. Being able work with IOS doesn't mean there is a plethora of IOS apps to work with

  3. HM-10 doesn't get talked about for those reasons, but the code is actually the same.

But it can still work on the same platforms and apps that HC-05 can correct?

To this end, I am attempting to cut to the chase by installing a bare HM-10 on a basic backboard for the HC-05.

Please explain why you are attempting this? Is the backboard for the HC-05 in any way better or more preferable than the backboard of the HM-10? Or are you attempting to do a controlled experiment to see if a person would notice the difference similar to a double blind study?

Thomas499:
But it can still work on the same platforms and apps that HC-05 can correct?

As I understand it, yes. I think it is actually the bleeding obvious. If these devices weren’t backward compatible, they wouldn’t get to the end of the runway and everybody would rather wait until something came along that was. I think you need to be careful and don’t expect wonders if your HM-10 isn’t talking to another BT 4. Check your phone!

Please explain why you are attempting this? Is the backboard for the HC-05 in any way better or more preferable than the backboard of the HM-10? Or are you attempting to do a controlled experiment to see if a person would notice the difference similar to a double blind study?

Nothing so sophisticated, I’m afraid, I was just seeing if I could be a cheapskate. A bare HM-10 soldered to a JY-MCU will hardly cost more than an HC-05. I can’t tell if there is a difference in the backboards and the datasheet for the HM-10 suggests there isn’t any. I think the HM-10 will be the norm soon. I believe the HC-05 prices are already starting to sink on eBay