Bluetooth Pairing

The nw2s::b uses the bluetooth connection for two things.

  1. Uploading new sketches (really it’s firmware)
  2. Issuing commands to the current sketch

The bluetooth module included with the nw2s::b is built by Adafruit and is very easy to set up and get running. It uses the SPP standard which most operating systems support with no additional drivers required. It’s easy for applications to use as well as they just see the device as a plain ol’ serial port.

I’ll cover setting it up on OS X and Windows, but if you’re adventurous, you’ll be able to get something going on your Android phone or tablet. Unfortunately, iOS does not currently support the SPP protocol.

OS X Pairing

The following sequence will get your nw2s::b paired with your OS X computer. Before you start, please close any applications that may be interested in knowing that you have a new serial port.

Start the wizard

Open the system preferences and then open the Bluetooth panel. You’ll see the following screen – or something like it.

01 pairing - add

Click on the ‘+’ to open the wizard which will guide you through pairing.

Select the Adafruit device

Your computer will scan for available devices and show any items that are not currently paired. If you have more than one nw2s::b, each of them will have a unique number. If you don’t see it, make sure the device has power. If it has power and the LEDs are blinking on the bluetooth board, then make sure it’s in pairing mode by clicking the ‘Pair’ button.

02 pairing - device

Start the pairing process

Click on ‘Continue’ and the pairing process will start. It will take a few seconds.

03 pairing - attempt

Finish

When it’s done you will permanently have a new serial port on your computer. Note that the Bluetooth connection will only be active when there is an open serial connections. Some examples of when an active connection is open are when the IDE is uploading or when the IDE serial monitor window is open. It will appear disconnected at all other times.

04 pairing - end

Configure IDE to support Bluetooth upload

If you are going to use the IDE to upload new sketches over Bluetooth, you’ll need to add a new configuration to the boards.txt file. This is not absolutely necessary, but it help speed things up and makes the process a little more reliable.

show contents

  1. Navigate to /Applications and find the ‘Arduino’ application
  2. Right click and choose ‘Show Package Contents’
  3. Navigate to Contents/Resources/Java/hardware/arduino/sam
  4. Open boards.txt in a text editor of your choice
  5. Add the following lines to the END of the file

Windows

Coming Soon! I don’t have any windows boxes hanging around at the moment.

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