To help you get your Bluefruit LE module talking to other Central devices, we've put together a number of open source tools for most of the major platforms supporting Bluetooth Low Energy.

Bluefruit LE Client Apps and Libraries

Adafruit has put together the following mobile or desktop apps and libraries to make it as easy as possible to get your Bluefruit LE module talking to your mobile device or laptop, with full source available where possible:

Bluefruit LE Connect (Android/Java)

Bluetooth Low Energy support was added to Android starting with Android 4.3 (though it was only really stable starting with 4.4), and we've already released Bluefruit LE Connect to the Play Store.

The full source code for Bluefruit LE Connect for Android is also available on Github to help you get started with your own Android apps.  You'll need a recent version of Android Studio to use this project.

Bluefruit LE Connect  (iOS/Swift)

Apple was very early to adopt Bluetooth Low Energy, and we also have an iOS version of the Bluefruit LE Connect app available in Apple's app store.

The full swift source code for Bluefruit LE Connect for iOS is also available on Github. You'll need XCode and access to Apple's developper program to use this project:

Version 2.x of the app is a complete rewrite that includes iOS, OS X GUI and OS X command-line tools in a single codebase.

Bluefruit LE Connect for OS X (Swift)

This OS X desktop application is based on the same V2.x codebase as the iOS app, and gives you access to BLE UART, basic Pin I/O and OTA DFU firmware updates from the convenience of your laptop or mac.

This is a great choice for logging sensor data locally and exporting it as a CSV, JSON or XML file for parsing in another application, and uses the native hardware on your computer so no BLE dongle is required on any recent mac.

The full source is also available on Github.

Bluefruit LE Command Line Updater for OS X (Swift)

This experimental command line tool is unsupported and provided purely as a proof of concept, but can be used to allow firmware updates for Bluefruit devices from the command line.

This utility performs automatic firmware updates similar to the way that the GUI application does, by checking the firmware version on your Bluefruit device (via the Device Information Service), and comparing this against the firmware versions available online, downloading files in the background if appropriate.

Simply install the pre-compiled tool via the DMG file and place it somewhere in the system path, or run the file locally via './bluefruit' to see the help menu:

$ ./bluefruit
bluefruit v0.3
	bluefruit <command> [options...]

	Scan peripherals:   scan
	Automatic update:   update [--enable-beta] [--uuid <uuid>]
	Custom firmware:    dfu --hex <filename> [--init <filename>] [--uuid <uuid>]
	Show this screen:   --help
	Show version:       --version

	--uuid <uuid>    If present the peripheral with that uuid is used. If not present a list of peripherals is displayed
	--enable-beta    If not present only stable versions are used

Short syntax:
	-u = --uuid, -b = --enable-beta, -h = --hex, -i = --init, -v = --version, -? = --help

Deprecated: Bluefruit Buddy (OS X)

This native OS X application is a basic proof of concept app that allows you to connect to your Bluefruit LE module using most recent macbooks or iMacs. You can get basic information about the modules and use the UART service to send and receive data.

The full source for the application is available in the github repo at Adafruit_BluefruitLE_OSX.

ABLE (Cross Platform/Node+Electron)

ABLE (Adafruit Bluefruit LE Desktop) is a cross-platform desktop application based on Sandeep Misty's noble library and the Electron project from Github (used by Atom).

It runs on OS X, Windows 7+ and select flavours of Linux (Ubuntu tested locally).  Windows 7 support is particularly interesting since Windows 7 has no native support for Bluetooth Low Energy but the noble library talks directly to supported Bluetooth 4.0 USB dongles to emulate BLE on the system (though at this stage it's still in early BETA and drops the connection and takes more care to work with).

This app allows you to collect sensor data or perform many of the same functionality offered by the mobile Bluefruit LE Connect apps, but on the desktop.

The app is still in BETA, but full source is available in addition to the easy to use pre-compiled binaries.

Bluefruit LE Python Wrapper

As a proof of concept, we've played around a bit with getting Python working with the native Bluetooth APIs on OS X and the latest version of Bluez on certain Linux targets.

There are currently example sketches showing how to retreive BLE UART data as well as some basic details from the Device Information Service (DIS).

This isn't an actively support project and was more of an experiment, but if you have a recent Macbook or a Raspberry Pi and know Python, you might want to look at Adafruit_Python_BluefruitLE in our github account.

Debug Tools

If your sense of adventure gets the better of you, and your Bluefruit LE module goes off into the weeds, the following tools might be useful to get it back from unknown lands.

These debug tools are provided purely as a convenience for advanced users for device recovery purposes, and are not recommended unless you're OK with potentially bricking your board. Use them at your own risk.

AdaLink (Python)

This command line tool is a python-based wrapper for programming ARM MCUs using either a Segger J-Link or an STLink/V2. You can use it to reflash your Bluefruit LE module using the latest firmware from the Bluefruit LE firmware repo.

Details on how to use the tool are available in the file on the main Adafruit_Adalink repo on Github.

Completely reprogramming a Bluefruit LE module with AdaLink would require four files, and would look something like this (using a JLink):

adalink nrf51822 --programmer jlink --wipe
  --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/softdevice/s110_nrf51_8.0.0_softdevice.hex" 
  --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/bootloader/bootloader_0002.hex"
  --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/0.6.7/blefriend32/blefriend32_s110_xxac_0_6_7_150917_blefriend32.hex"
  --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/0.6.7/blefriend32/blefriend32_s110_xxac_0_6_7_150917_blefriend32_signature.hex"

You can also use the AdaLink tool to get some basic information about your module, such as which SoftDevice is currently programmed or the IC revision (16KB SRAM or 32KB SRAM) via the --info command:

$ adalink nrf51822 -p jlink --info
Hardware ID : QFACA10 (32KB)
Segger ID   : nRF51822_xxAC
SD Version  : S110 8.0.0
Device Addr : **:**:**:**:**:**
Device ID   : ****************

Adafruit nRF51822 Flasher (Python)

Adafruit's nRF51822 Flasher is an internal Python tool we use in production to flash boards as they go through the test procedures and off the assembly line, or just testing against different firmware releases when debugging.

It relies on AdaLink or OpenOCD beneath the surface (see above), but you can use this command line tool to flash your nRF51822 with a specific SoftDevice, Bootloader and Bluefruit firmware combination.

It currently supports using either a Segger J-Link or STLink/V2 via AdaLink, or GPIO on a Raspberry Pi if you don't have access to a traditional ARM SWD debugger.  (A pre-built version of OpenOCD for the RPi is included in the repo since building it from scratch takes a long time on the original RPi.)

We don't provide active support for this tool since it's purely an internal project, but made it public just in case it might help an adventurous customer debrick a board on their own.

$ python --jtag=jlink --board=blefriend32 --softdevice=8.0.0 --bootloader=2 --firmware=0.6.7
jtag       	: jlink
softdevice 	: 8.0.0
bootloader 	: 2
board      	: blefriend32
firmware   	: 0.6.7
Writing Softdevice + DFU bootloader + Application to flash memory
adalink -v nrf51822 --programmer jlink --wipe --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/softdevice/s110_nrf51_8.0.0_softdevice.hex" --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/bootloader/bootloader_0002.hex" --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/0.6.7/blefriend32/blefriend32_s110_xxac_0_6_7_150917_blefriend32.hex" --program-hex "Adafruit_BluefruitLE_Firmware/0.6.7/blefriend32/blefriend32_s110_xxac_0_6_7_150917_blefriend32_signature.hex"

This guide was first published on Mar 11, 2020. It was last updated on Jul 23, 2024.

This page (Software Resources) was last updated on Aug 31, 2015.

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