Beyond Bluetooth: Navigating the IoT Landscape with BLE

Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) is a wireless communication technology that, in addition to the well-known Bluetooth, plays a crucial role in the realm of Internet of Things (IoT). Let’s delve into the intricacies of BLE, its origins, functionalities, and strengths.

Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) Origins

Bluetooth, introduced in 1999, evolved over the years. In 2009, Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) emerged with version 4.0. While retaining the core features of the original standard, BLE was optimized to significantly reduce energy consumption, making it ideal for IoT devices.

BLE Terminology

BLE goes by various names, such as Bluetooth LE or Bluetooth Smart. Initially developed by Nokia as Wibree, it later became an integral part of the Bluetooth standard. The primary objective was to enhance energy efficiency, making BLE a sought-after standard in the IoT landscape.

BLE Core Features

Low Energy Consumption One of BLE’s standout features is its remarkably low energy consumption. Designed for periodic transmission of small data packets over short distances, BLE is easily deployable and typically consumes only half the energy of conventional Bluetooth, resulting in cost-effective, long-lasting battery life.

Connection Types

BLE devices can assume different roles. A BLE-connected device can function as a “Central,” managing data transfer, or as a “Peripheral,” regularly connecting and transmitting data to the Central. Additionally, there are “Broadcasters” and “Observers” for specific purposes in data transmission.

Classic Bluetooth vs. BLE

While classic Bluetooth is suitable for continuous, high-volume data transfer (e.g., audio), BLE is ideal for applications requiring limited information transmission, such as humidity or temperature data. BLE operates independently on battery power for several years without the need for a continuous connection, making it a cost-effective choice.

Technical Aspects of BLE

Bidirectional Transmission -BLE enables bidirectional data transfer on the 2.4 GHz band, utilizing 40 physical channels with time and frequency multiplexing. Although sharing a frequency range with Wi-Fi, BLE consumes less power, with lower range and speed compared to Wi-Fi.

BLE Strengths

BLE, backed by industry giants like IBM, Microsoft, and Intel, ensures continuity and is already integrated into all smartphones. Beacons, a simple BLE solution for object and item identification, have become widespread, with formats like iBeacon and Eddystone contributing to diverse ecosystems.

Beacon Technology

Beacons consist of a battery, microcontroller, antenna, radio circuit, sensors, and a UUID for identification. They can transmit data directly to a gateway or tracker, combining beacon data with location information for further analysis on a server.

Data Transmission

Beacons transmit various data types, depending on the format. For example, iBeacons emit reference numbers (UUID, major, and minor), while Eddystone supports different packet types, including UID and URL.
Practical Applications

Today, a wide range of devices, from smartphones and computers to trackers and vehicle computers, are Bluetooth-compatible. With an open protocol, devices from different manufacturers can be seamlessly integrated, offering freedom and flexibility.


In summary, Bluetooth Low Energy has revolutionized wireless communication for IoT applications. Its low energy consumption, bidirectional capabilities, and diverse applications, especially through beacon technology, make BLE a powerful force in the ever-expanding world of connectivity.