Tech Fact Or Fiction? Bluetooth mesh is only capable on Bluetooth 5 devices

Nov 10, 2017
 

Tech Fact or Fiction. In this series Symmetry Electronics Appilcation Engineers delve into the common myths and misconceptions which frequently come up and put them to rest, using their expert knowledge and experience.

Fact or Fiction?

Bluetooth mesh is only capable on Bluetooth 5 devices:

False!

Bluetooth Mesh is possible on all Bluetooth LE versions (4.0, 4.1, 4.2 and 5.0) contingent on manufacturer support (SDKs, APIs and tools)

Read more > Bluetooth 5 versus Bluetooth 4.2, what’s the difference?

Bluetooth mesh is a new topology for all Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) that enables many-to-many device communications. It helps to create large-scale device networks where tens or hundreds of nodes are needed and provides government grade, multi-level security with all communications authenticated and encrypted. Point-to-point and broadcast topology are both still available but now data can travel longer distances by bouncing messages through multiple devices to their eventual destination.

Currently, a majority of Bluetooth 5 devices are capable of Bluetooth Mesh and all its features but many Bluetooth 4.0, 4.1 and 4.2 devices are still capable of Bluetooth Mesh, just with some limited features. Check with the manufacturer’s documentation to determine which features are capable for each device. You can also view the Bluetooth Mesh networking specifications here:

https://www.bluetooth.com/specifications/mesh-specifications

Capable devices:

Silabs:  EFR32BG12; EFR32BG13; EFR32MG12; EFR32MG13; MGM12P

   Coming soon … EFR32BG1; EFR32MG1; BGM111; BGM113; BGM11S; BGM121; BGM123

Nordic: nRF52840, nRF52832; nRF51822

Qualcomm/CSR, NXP/Freescale, and Cypress/Broadcom also have mesh support on some of their devices

 

Application for Bluetooth Mesh include:

  • Intelligent building automation with connected lighting, HVAC systems and sensors
  • Connected and intelligent lighting systems used connected lighting as beaconing or asset tracking backbone
  • Deliver points of interest (PoI), way finding and indoor position information; integrate beaconing into lighting and building automation systems
  • Integrate asset tracking capabilities into professional lighting and building automation systems

Bluetooth Mesh networking does not require more power than previous topologies. Sensors and similar battery-powered devices operate as low-power nodes on a Bluetooth Mesh network. They only need to wake up at least once every four days or when they have data to transmit, allowing for very low power consumption. Only products designed to be upgradable can be enhanced in the field to support mesh networking. Upgradeability is determined by several factors, such as the amount of memory available in the Bluetooth chip.

For additional questions and Bluetooth Mesh support, please contact one of our Application Engineers at Symmetry Electronics.

Written by Symmetry Electronics
Application Engineer 
Tyler Wojciechowicz 

 

If there's a common tech myth or misconception you'd like to see answered by the Symmetry Electronics experts email jamess@symmetryelectronics.com

Check out more Tech Fact Or Fiction:

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Tech Fact Or Fiction? Selecting a new product for your design means you do all the research

Tech Fact Or Fiction? I Should Use SoCs To Keep My Cost Down

 

 



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