Adafruit CircuitPython supports using Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) to communicate wirelessly with BLE devices, phones, tablets, and with other CircuitPython boards. Adafruit provides many libraries to make this easy and to support specific devices.

Now you can use those same libraries (or write your own) on any host computer--Windows, Mac, or Linux--that has BLE hardware. Most modern computers, especially laptops, already have Bluetooth hardware built in. If not, you can plug in a USB adapter such as Adafruit's Bluetooth 4.0 USB Module.

The Adafruit Blinka bleio library makes this possible. It is a regular Python library that runs on desktop Python, not on CircuitPython boards. It re-implements the _bleio module that is part of CircuitPython: all our BLE libraries are ultimately based on _bleio.

The Blinka bleio library only supports acting in a BLE central role. You can connect to peripheral devices, such as heart rate monitors, pulse oximeters, bicycle sensors, etc., but you cannot act as a peripheral yourself with this code. 

The Blinka bleio library is part of the family of "Blinka" libraries that run under regular Python and implement CircuitPython functionality, including Blinka and Blinka displayio.

This guide will explain how to get Python set up on your host computer, how to install the Blinka bleio library, and then give some examples of how to use it.

Bluetooth Capable Devices from Adafruit

Angled shot of a Bluetooth 4.0 USB Module.
Add Bluetooth capability to your computer super fast with a USB BT 4.0 adapter. This adapter is backwards compatible with v2.1 and earlier, but also supports the latest v4.0/Bluetooth...
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Some Adafruit Microcontrollers with Bluetooth

Animated GIF showing CLUE board  displaying data from the many on-board sensors.
Do you feel like you just don't have a CLUE? Well, we can help with that - get a CLUE here at Adafruit by picking up this sensor-packed development board. We wanted to build some...
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shot of a Black woman's neon-green manicured hand holding up a Circuit Playground Bluefruit glowing rainbow LEDs.
Circuit Playground Bluefruit is our third board in the Circuit Playground series, another step towards a perfect introduction to electronics and programming. We've...
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Angled shot of a Adafruit Feather nRF52840 Express.
The Adafruit Feather nRF52840 Express is the new Feather family member with Bluetooth Low Energy and native USB support featuring the nRF52840!  It's...
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Angled shot of blue, rectangular, microcontroller.
The Adafruit Feather Bluefruit Sense takes our popular Feather nRF52840 Express and adds a smorgasbord of sensors...
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This guide was first published on Oct 27, 2020. It was last updated on May 20, 2024.

This page (Overview) was last updated on Mar 08, 2024.

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