Reference designs for iBeacons

April 16, 2014 // By Julien Happich
Texas Instruments has announced its support for iBeacon technology across its Bluetooth low energy portfolio including the company’s Bluetooth Smart SoCs, SimpleLink CC2541 and CC2543 wireless microcontrollers (MCUs), its Bluetooth dual mode SimpleLink CC2564 solution, and the BL6450Q automotive connectivity device.

TI is also launching a location app, with iBeacon technology for its CC2541-based SimpleLink SensorTag development kit, as well as a low cost, small form-factor broadcaster reference design based on the CC2543. The CC2543 is a low-cost version of CC2541 optimized for beacons and broadcast applications.

The app allows engineers to upload a floor plan and “place” SensorTags to easily set up an indoor positioning system. The app provides feedback on how near users are the SensorTags and can launch a user-specified URL when they are in the immediate vicinity of a SensorTag. Additionally, existing SensorTags can be updated with the latest SensorTag App through an over-the-air upgrade to be compatible with iBeacon technology.

TI is also introducing a coin cell-sized, low cost and low-power broadcaster reference design that enables fast volume production of devices with iBeacon technology based on the SimpleLink CC2543. The SensorTag reference design is FCC-certified and includes Gerbers, schematics, layout, and BOM.

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