Bluetooth® Smart comes of age for Internet of Things applications

At Embedded World this week we are excited to launch our new Bluetooth® Smart solution, CSR Mesh. By allowing for an unlimited number of Bluetooth Smart enabled devices to be simply networked together and controlled directly from a single smartphone, tablet or PC, CSR Mesh is opening up a new era of possibilities when it comes to the Internet of Things. We think it’s a real game changer for the market and will make Bluetooth Smart the technology of choice for smart home applications.

Unlike other home automation connectivity solutions available, CSR Mesh allows consumers to directly control devices and collect sensor data from a mobile device anywhere in the home. CSR Mesh uses a light weight protocol that minimises the power consumption in each device within the mesh. CSR Mesh is easy to set up, and devices can be configured from a smartphone or tablet to be controlled in groups. Switches and displays can also be added as standalone devices, just attached to the wall with no wiring. The CSR Mesh solution runs on CSR Bluetooth Low Energy single mode devices, and is built above and compatible with the Bluetooth 4.1 specification.

CSR is supporting a number of lead customers with the CSR Mesh technology and will be launching a development kit to a wider audience in the coming months. We’re looking forward to seeing how this solution kick starts the smart home market. But, it’s not just transforming homes. In the CSR Mesh video, the team gives us their take on what the possibilities hold for the technology and how it will enable the future of the Internet of Things.

We’ll be showing our CSR Mesh lighting demo at Embedded World in Nüremberg Germany from 25 – 27 February, where we will also be showcasing how CSR’s Bluetooth Smart Starter Dev Kit can help you create fully-featured Bluetooth Smart devices, such as heart rate monitors or cycle speed devices. Come and see us at Hall 4A, stand 4A-519. We look forward to seeing you there.

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Five Steps to Get Your Bluetooth® Smart Product to Market

Now that our low-cost Starter Development Kit is now available globally via Broadband, BCD MicroelectronicsDigikey and local CSR distributors, developers all over the world are able to begin designing new fully-featured Bluetooth® Smart products that take the technology in exciting new directions. Whether these are used for known applications such as wearable heart rate sensors, or for entirely unheard of ones, CSR is dedicated to easing developers’ efforts in bringing these ideas to market as simply as possible. The Bluetooth Smart development process can be daunting for those just starting out, which is why I have put together some pointers to help get developers new to Bluetooth, started.

CSR Bluetooth Smart Starter Development Kit

CSR Bluetooth Smart Starter Development Kit

And don’t forget, to be in with a chance of winning a Nike+ Fuelband, enter our SDK competition by sending us your creative unboxing videos and pics! Find out more details in our Calling all Bluetooth Smart developers – Get #unboxing blog post.

For more detailed support, don’t hesitate to check our newly launched wiki or send us questions via our new developer forum.

1. Design Prototype Hardware


2. Develop Prototype Software

  • Application and software development is enabled by the CSR µEnergy®  Software Development Kit (SDK), included within the Starter Devolpment Kit. The integrated development environment is built upon xIDE, and so has a similar look and feel to the SDKs and ADKs that are offered for many other CSR Bluetooth devices
  • In order to use Bluetooth Low Energy technology, a device must be compatible with the GATT Bluetooth profile and define a set of appropriate services
  • The SDK includes example applications for popular Bluetooth Smart profiles that can be run on the target board such as heart rate sensors, alert tags, mice and keyboards, cadence sensors and many more. The next step is to create the Target Software based on a CSR example application for a chosen profile or define your own services for a custom profile
  • Either extend an example application with functionality needed for specific product or define a new application, typically starting from one of the example apps
  • Create smartphone app based on CSR µEnergy app framework. Example CSR apps for Android can be downloaded from Google Play and they include CSR Android Heart Rate App, CSR Android Cycle Speed App and the CSR Running Speed App. Developers can also download the CSR iOS app from the Apple App Store which includes example code for Blood Pressure Meters, Glucose Meters and Health Thermometers


3. Build Pre-Production Hardware

  • Combine Reference Module design with application-specific hardware in pre-production PCB
    • Based on CSR Reference Module manufacturing pack
  • Manufacture pre-production PCBs


4. Integrate and test hardware and software

  • Build a production test environment based on CSR Production Test Tools
    • Programme unique Bluetooth address
    • Trim the XTAL
    • Load target application to non-volatile memory
    • Test the Bluetooth radio functionality using direct test
  • Test overall product functionality


5. Move to Mass Production

  • Obtain regulatory approval dependent on region and product type
    • Simplify CE and FCC approvals by using CSR pre-qualified radio design from Reference Module
  • List End Product on Bluetooth website
    • Simplify SIG listing by association with CSR QD ID (B017702) for reference module
  • Publish smartphone app to Android and iOS markets
  • Ramp volume production
  • Implement marketing and sales activities


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An introduction to Antennas and Propagation: Part Five

In the penultimate installment of his 6-part series of technical articles about radio transmission, CSR’s RF consultant Les Smith continues his expert coverage on the subject of antenna types…

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Bluetooth® Smart Tyre Pressure Monitor Demo

In this video, Thomas Carmody, Head of Connectivity Marketing, puts CSR’s latest CSR1010™ based Tyre Pressure Monitoring Sensor to the test, demonstrating how Bluetooth® Smart enabled technology is turning in-car vehicle diagnostics mobile.

CSR’s Bluetooth Smart CSR1010™ auto solution –

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Calling all Bluetooth Smart developers – Get #unboxing!

If you’re a developer and are curious about all things Bluetooth Smart, keep reading.

To celebrate the launch of our low-cost Bluetooth Smart Starter Developer Kit we’re launching a Twitter competition – allowing anyone who’s received one of our new dev kits to win a second generation Nike+ FuelBand.

The rules of our competition are simple. Tweet your twitpics or Vine videos portraying your SDK unboxing experience including @CSR_plc and #unboxing, and our guest judge, our distributor, Broadband, will pick the best one. The most creative, imaginative, or extreme experience will be in the running for a chance to win the prize. The closing date for submissions is midnight (GMT) on 28th Feb 2014 and the winner will be announced via @CSR_plc. Be sure to check out our terms and conditions if you have any questions before you submit. Developers are the most creative people I know and I can’t wait to see the entries!

For those of you who may have missed the announcement last month you can find more information about the SDK, which provides a complete environment for developers seeking to get their products up and running quickly for $99, here. If you’re thinking of developing a Bluetooth Smart product and want more information on the SDK, or you have any questions on getting started please let me know. Alternatively you can join one of our “Getting Started with Bluetooth Smart” webinars on 23rd January.

CSR Bluetooth Smart Starter Development Kit

The CSR Bluetooth Smart Starter Development Kit – how will you go about your #unboxing?

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CSR at CES 2014 – Joep van Beurden on Automotive Infotainment

With the excitement of CES now over, we take a look back at some of the biggest trends to dominate the show. In this video CSR’s Chief Executive Officer Joep van Beurden explains why automotive infotainment has established itself as one of the hot topics at the consumer electronics trade show and reveals why Bluetooth® Smart is leading this change.

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CSR at CES 2014 – Joep van Beurden on Wireless Audio Trends

CES has always provided a great snapshot of the hot new trends for the year ahead and this year was no different. In this video CSR’s Chief Executive Officer Joep van Beurden reveals what’s next for the world of audio streaming and how the reality of wirelessly connecting the entire home maybe a little closer than you might think.

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CSR at CES 2014 – Paul Williamson on Bluetooth Smart

Bluetooth® certainly has a strong presence at International CES 2014, featuring prominently in everything from wireless headsets to automotive infotainment systems. The future, however, is in Bluetooth Smart. Take a look at the video below, where Paul Williamson, CSR’s Director of Low Power Wireless, explains the importance of and wide range of applications for Bluetooth Smart. You’ll also hear Paul talk about how Bluetooth Smart is completely changing the product development paradigm companies have been working within for so long.


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CSR at CES 2014 – Joep van Beurden’s Trends & Predictions

International CES 2014 is here, and the excitement is palpable in Las Vegas. Exhibitors are showcasing all their latest technologies based on what they believe will be the dominant trends of the very near future.

Take a look at the video below where CSR’s Chief Executive Officer Joep van Beurden talks about what he believes will be the technology trend to catch like “wildfire” in 2014 and beyond. Hint: CSR’s unique expertise in Bluetooth® Smart will position the company for successful partnerships across a wide range of industries as this trend continues to boom.

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Bluetooth® Smart jewellery fuses fashion and function

CES starts tomorrow and wearable tech is set to be one of the hot trends at the show. But what do consumers want when it comes to wearable technology? CSR decided to ask them and found that 72% say that it’s important that wearable technology devices look good and 67% feel it’s important that they fit with their personal style[1].

So we decided to develop a range of connected jewellery, powered by our latest Bluetooth® Smart solution, to demonstrate the future of wearable technology. The pendant-style connected necklaces contain integrated electronics that enable the wearer to customise the colour and brightness emitted to suit their mood, or to coordinate with a particular outfit.

The electronics integrated into the jewellery have been designed to support a range of functions and so they can also alert users to new notifications on their smartphones, an application that would be suited to a connected bracelet, for example.

The jewellery uses the CSR1012™, part of the proven CSR µEnergy® range, which has been engineered specifically for the wearable technology market. It allows the pendants to connect to smartphones using a fraction of the power of standard Bluetooth by connecting directly to a small lithium battery. It’s also designed to enable a small form factor, making it ideal for wearable accessories.

We can’t wait to see what other truly wearable devices developers come up with. If you’re a developer thinking about developing a Bluetooth Smart powered wearable device and need some advice we’d love to hear from you.

[1] Research results are taken from an online survey of 1076 GB consumers in December 2013

Posted in Applications and Markets, Bluetooth Smart, Connectivity, Technology | 2 Comments