The Bluetooth Special Interest Group recently made its new Bluetooth Developer Studio available to developers. The primary goal is to make it easier to incorporate Bluetooth wireless radio technology into devices connecting to the Internet of Things. The GATT-based app writing environment promises to cut Bluetooth education time by 50%.
The Internet of Things remains poised to take off but is closer than ever to the launchpad. In order to connect the things, wireless radio technologies are necessary. Bluetooth is one of the preferred standards thanks to its newest Bluetooth 4.1 Low Energy profile, which dramatically cuts down the power required to make those connections. Bottom line, it is possible we can't have connected toothbrushes, heart-rate monitors or door locks without Bluetooth. Enter the Bluetooth Developer Studio.
The Bluetooth SIG believes some developers are intimidated by Bluetooth. "The SIG has put tremendous focus on building tools and programs to help developers get to market faster and reduce learning time — the Bluetooth Developer Studio is the culmination of that work," Steve Hegenderfer, director of developer programs for Bluetooth SIG, said in a press release.
The Studio features a graphical application development and debugging tool that the SIG says should help developers get over the Bluetooth learning curve. Drag-and-drop tools let app writers find the Bluetooth profiles they need for their projects and build the profiles into their projects. The Studio provides tutorials and code samples to help jump-start development efforts. Thanks to a tool that auto-generates code from third-party solutions (think Bluetooth radio-makers), developers can test with both virtual and real-world devices. It also features proven solutions from a library of custom use cases that increase the quality of your users' experience. Alpha testers of the toolset claim it offers measurable reductions in project development time.
"Providing tools like this for the industry makes it possible for developers, innovators or anyone with an idea for the IoT to bring their product idea to market quickly and inexpensively," said Hegenderfer.
The Bluetooth SIG expects 3 billion Bluetooth devices will ship this year. Since Bluetooth is at the core of the Internet of Things, the Bluetooth SIG has a stake in making sure its technology doesn't hold up development efforts.
"The Bluetooth Developer Studio makes it easy to create consistent implementations that 'just work' for customers," added Hegenderfer. "The tool also gives developers a chance to share their implementations with the larger Bluetooth developer community. They can share reference designs or simply publish their custom use cases for others to use or build from."
The Bluetooth Developer Studio is available in beta. The SIG requires interested participants to become members of the Special Interest Group. Membership is free. Participation in the beta is limited, though the SIG didn't say how limited. You can get started here.
Hegenderfer offers an unfiltered, though slightly biased, rundown of the benefits in a blog post.