Bluefruit LE Friend
The Bluefruit LE Friend from Adafruit USB-to-BLE board makes it easy to get your computer talking to your BLE enabled phone or tablet using a standard serial/UART connection.
Bluefruit LE Friend has a common FTDI USB/Serial adapter onboard so that apears on the computer as a serial interface. Using a standard terminal emulator, any data that you enter will be transferred over the air to the connected phone or tablet, and vice versa, as a basic 'UART' connection.
- Completely transparent Data mode for USB to Bluetooth LE UART connectivity from computer to tablet/phone
- Connect to any phone or tablet with BLE, great for debugging or developing BLE devices or apps
- Works great with both Nordic (Android/iOS) or Adafruit (iOS) UART app.
- Nordic nRF51822 chipset with custom firmware onboard
- Optional Command mode to set GATT services/characteristics, advertising name/packet, Beacon capability, query status, RSSI, etc.
- Comes with standard Over-the-Air DFU bootloader, reprogram firmware using any BLE-capable iOS or Android device
- 4 LED indicators: blue connection status, red mode status, orange and green for RX/TX
- Snap-off SWD connector for advanced JTAG re-programming
- Comes with Nordic nRF58122 developer key
You might be wondering why when most computers already have Bluetooth what would you need this adaptor. Windows 7 doesn't support Bluetooth Low Energy natively, and on Win8 or OS X you'll have to sort through a huge pile of native Bluetooth APIs and development tools that often require an annual paid license and specific license terms to access. You can't just connect wirelessly without a huge stack of software or firmware in the way because there isn't a standard, open source, cross-platform way to talk BLE today.
The Bluefruit Friend from Adafruit is much more, it has a full BLE peripheral stack and interface software so that you can treat your BLE connection just like a UART connection - that makes it trivial to use with free Terminal software or scripting software like python (with pySerial).