iBeacon Protocol: region, blink rate, ranges

iBeacon Protocol: region, blink rate, ranges

MOCA Platform requires iBeacon protocol compliant beacons. These beacons use BLE (Bluetooth Low Energy) to broadcast their position (up to 100 meters). The iBeacon protocol reports four attributes (prefix, UUID, Major and Minor).

  • Prefix - Advertising prefix.
  • UUID - Unique identifier of the region the beacon is representing.
  • Major - 2 Byte number. Maximum range of 65535.
  • Minor - 2 byte number. Maximum range of 65535.

For region definitions the most important values are UUID, Major and Minor. Not every iBeacon compliant device has a different UUID: this unique identifier is really the unique identifier of the region it represents. Therefore you can have a vast amount of iBeacon compliant devices with the same UUID but different Major/Minors.

This is specially important for iOS: there is a hard limit which is 20 regions (regions being both geofences and beacons). We always establish one region as Geofence for effective beacon detection. By alternating and grouping beacons using same UUIDs you can overcome the limitations.

The blink rate (transmission frequency) is defined at an up to 10Hz. That means ten bursts per second, which affects the battery life. Many providers change this default to be more manageable (e.g. a blink every 350ms)


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