Silicon Labs upgraded its EFR Connect Bluetooth® Low Energy (BLE) mobile app with four new valuable features, making it the first (and only) BLE mobile app to offer data throughput and mobile interoperability tests to embedded IoT developers. This blog introduces the new EFR Connect 2.3 app, available for download on June 16, 2021.
EFR Connect 2.3, the new version of Silicon Labs' BLE mobile app, provides embedded IoT developers with four new features: mobile interoperability test, BLE throughput test, GATT configurator and blinky demo.
The new mobile interoperability test helps developers quickly verify their Silicon Labs Bluetooth Low Energy SoCs and modules against Android and iOS mobile devices globally. EFR Connect is the first BLE mobile app to bring this high-efficiency feature to developers by simply tapping a single button on the app UI. When started, the mobile interoperability test runs a sequence of standard Bluetooth operations between the mobile phone and Silicon Labs hardware to verify interoperability and log results via UART and packet trace interface (PTI) for further assessment and debug.
The Bluetooth specification defines theoretical throughput levels for various PHYs. In contrast, the actual throughput that can be achieved by a BLE application is lower and hard to measure – that is until EFR Connect 2.3 came to be: it now enables embedded developers to run BLE throughput tests quickly. Developers can easily measure application data throughput between the mobile and embedded device in either direction, see the difference between the theoretical max and the actual throughput available for implementation, and determine the impact of distance and signal strength on throughput.
EFR Connect 2.3 now introduces developers to the most flexible GATT configurator, allowing them to intuitively create and modify multiple GATT databases in the mobile, while swiftly switching server and client roles between the mobile and embedded device. An existing GATT database created with the GATT configurator on Simplicity Studio (IDE) can be easily exported to EFR Connect and vice-versa, just like sharing a GATT database between embedded projects on Simplicity Studio.
What's the benefit? Faster development! Developers can now emulate a BLE server in the mobile app, make testing and debugging easier, and avoid duplicate coding when developing the client-side application.
To all developers new to Silicon Labs or those looking to skip basic practicalities and jump straight into coding – Blinky demo is your new best friend. The new Blinky demo on EFR Connect 2.3 accelerates time to 'hello world' for BLE connectivity, getting developers started faster. If there is activity between the EFR Connect mobile app and an embedded device, and Blinky shows a green light – a developer is ready to start generating value through embedded coding.
Why are so many developers using a BLE mobile app? Simply put, time is money. With EFR Connect, developers can save time spent on testing and debugging code. With the new 2.3 version come unique, valuable features that no other BLE mobile app can offer!