All You Need to Know About Nordic Beacon

All You Need to Know About Nordic Beacon
All You Need to Know About Nordic Beacon

Bluetooth low energy is an important wireless connection technology of IoT, and BLE SoC is highlighting its strong market competitiveness due to its low power consumption. Nordic, which has long occupied more than 40% of the BLE market, spent 5 years from launching the first BLE to becoming the industry leader in the BLE field. Among them, the Nordic nRF52 series Bluetooth LE chips are popular choices for beacon design and development. In this article, we will explore the definition of Nordic beacon, different classifications, and how to select a suitable Nordic beacon for your business.

What are Nordic Bluetooth beacons

Nordic Bluetooth beacons are wireless, battery-powered devices that use Bluetooth technology to communicate with other Bluetooth-enabled devices, such as smartphones or tablets. They transmit a unique identifier that can be picked up by nearby BLE-enabled devices, which can then use this identifier to perform various actions, such as sending a notification, opening a website, or providing location-based information.

One of the key benefits of Nordic beacons is their low power consumption, especially for the nRF52 and nRF53 series beacons. These beacons are designed to be small and inexpensive, making them a great choice for various applications, including retail, hospitality, transportation, and more. They are also highly customizable, allowing developers to create bespoke beacons with unique features and functionality.

A classification of Nordic beacons based on chips

Depending on the specific Nordic BLE chips used, Bluetooth beacons can be classified into several different types including nRF51, nRF52, and nRF53.

nRF51 series

The Nordic nRF51 series of chips are some of the most widely used in Bluetooth beacons. These chips are designed for low power consumption and feature a range of communication protocols, including BLE, ANT, and 2.4 GHz proprietary. Beacons using nRF51 chips are ideal for use in applications where low power consumption is significant, such as in battery-powered devices.

nRF52 series

The nRF52 series of chips are the latest generation of BLE chips, offering improved performance and a range of new features over the nRF51 series. These chips are designed for higher performance and increased memory. Beacons equipped with nRF52 chips are well-suited for applications where high performance is crucial, such as use cases that require frequent updates or real-time data transmission.

nRF53 series

In November 2019, Nordic announced the nRF5340 high-end multi-protocol system-on-chip, the first member of the next-generation nRF53 family of chips. The chip is built on Nordic’s nRF51 and nRF52 series of multi-protocol chips, and introduces a dual-processor hardware architecture with the advantages of high performance, low power consumption, scalability and high heat resistance. Beacons using nRF53 are perfect for use in high-end applications that demand the latest technology and features.

A comparison of Nordic beacon nRF51/52/53

nRF53405.3128 MHz Arm Cortex-M33 + 64 MHz Arm Cortex-M33aQFN94
1 MB + 256 KB512 KB + 64 KB
nRF528405.364 MHz Arm Cortex-M4 with FPUaQFN73
1 MB256 KB
nRF528335.3×64 MHz Arm Cortex-M4 with FPUaQFN73
512 KB128 KB
nRF528325.3×××64 MHz Arm Cortex-M4 with FPUQFN48
512/256 KB64/32 KB
nRF528205.3××64 MHz Arm Cortex-M4QFN40256 KB32 KB
nRF528115.3××××64 MHz Arm Cortex-M4QFN48
192 KB24 KB
nRF528105.3×××××64 MHz Arm Cortex-M4QFN48
192 KB24 KB
nRF528055.3×××××64 MHz Arm Cortex-M4WLCSP28192 KB24 KB
nRF518224.2×××××16 MHz Arm Cortex-M0QFN48256/128 KB32/16 KB
nRF514224.2××××16 MHz Arm Cortex-M0QFN48256 KB16 KB
nRF518424.2×××××16 MHz Arm Cortex-M0QFN48256 KB16 KB
nRF518024.2×××××16 MHz Arm Cortex-M0QFN48
256 KB16 KB

Different applications of Nordic BLE beacon

Nordic beacons have a wide range of applications that can be used to enhance users experience in various industries. Whether in retail, healthcare, transportation, or entertainment, Nordic BLE beacons are available to help businesses and organizations better engage with customers and deliver a more personalized experience.

Retail: Retail stores can use Nordic Bluetooth beacons to enhance customers’ shopping experience. By using beacons, retailers can deliver personalized offers and promotions to customers’ smartphones as they walk through the store. This helps increase customer engagement and loyalty, and can even drive sales.

Museums and Galleries: A rich and interactive experience will be available to visitors with the adoption of Nordic BLE beacons. By mounting beacons, museums and galleries can provide visitors with information about exhibits, audio and video tours, and other multimedia content, enhancing the overall experience.

Healthcare: In healthcare, Nordic beacons can be used to track the location of patients within a hospital, providing real-time information about their waiting times. Additionally, beacons can be used to monitor the location of medical equipment, such as wheelchairs or oxygen tanks, to ensure these are being used effectively.

Transportation: Nordic BLE beacons are applicable in helping passengers navigate public transportation systems. For example, they can be used to provide real-time information about the location of buses and trains, or to help passengers find their way around a train station or airport.

Sports and Entertainment: The adoption of Nordic beacon can be used to enhance the fan experience at sports and entertainment events. For example, they can be used to provide fans with real-time information about the game or show, such as the score or the running time. Additionally, it’s a good way to deliver special promotions and offers to fans during the event.

How to select a suitable Nordic beacon

Choosing the right Nordic Bluetooth beacon requires careful consideration of several key factors, including range, battery life, compatibility, frequency and mounting options. When selecting a suitable Nordic beacon for your business, consider your specific requirements and beacon performance.

Range: The range of a Bluetooth beacon is a critical factor in determining its suitability in your consideration. It is significant to know the maximum distance between the beacon and the device receiving the signal. Nordic Semiconductor offers beacons with ranges from 50 to 400 meters, and you need to consider the range requirements and choose a beacon that fits your needs.

Battery Life: Battery life is another important factor to consider. Depending on the type of beacon you choose, it can range from a few months to several years. Taking into account your expected use case, choose a beacon with a battery life that meets your requirements.

Compatibility: It is also important to ensure that the beacon you choose is compatible with the device you plan to use it. Though Nordic Semiconductor beacons support Android and iOS devices, it’s worth checking out before you make a purchase of beacons.

Frequency: Beacons can operate on different frequencies. Consider the frequency that is best suited for your environment and choose a beacon that operates on that frequency.

Mounting Options: Depending on your intended application, the mounting options should also be taken into consideration. Bluetooth beacons can be mounted on walls, ceilings, or placed on flat surfaces. Consider the specific use case and choose a beacon with an easy and quick mounting option.

Get started with MOKOBlue Nordic beacon

Each type of Nordic Bluetooth beacon offers a different set of features and capabilities, making them applicable for different use cases. Choosing the right Bluetooth beacon is crucial for the success of your solutions. Offering a wide range of Bluetooth beacons based on Nordic chips, MOKOBlue is sure to have a Bluetooth beacon that fits your needs.

Written by ——
Share this post