Bluetooth LC beacons are low power devices that are used to broadcast a tiny amount of data to any device that's listening. This often takes the form of a mobile device running an app, such as Physical Web, that can read the beacon's advertising broadcast and display a URL the user can then visit.

There are two primary BLE beacon standards: Apple's iBeacon, and Google's Eddystone. In this guide, we'll use the Eddystone standard to create a beacon that advertises a website URL (which you can customize to any URL you like).

Advertising

When an Eddystone beacon is running, it transmits a packet of information that includes a Unique Identifier (UID), and another packet of information that includes a website URL.

Note, this data is transmitted with no need for connecting, pairing, or bonding with a mobile device. The beacon is pretty much just always sitting there yelling, "Hey! I'm a beacon! This is my name, and this is a URL I think you should visit!"

Other Uses

This guide focuses solely on using beacons to advertise a URL, however there are a few other common uses for beacons. These include indoor navigation, tracking (such as lost key finders like Tile), and interaction notifications, such as interactive museum tours.

This guide was first published on Feb 26, 2020. It was last updated on Feb 26, 2020.

This page (Understanding BLE Advertising Beacons) was last updated on Apr 13, 2021.

Text editor powered by tinymce.