Some of you have had issues when the tags have almost, but not quite, enough of range to reach your Raspberry Pi or other data collector. Maybe the tags are in middle of freezer and get attenuated by the surrounding metal, maybe something else.
We have made a quick pilot of a firmware which repeats BLE advertisement broadcasts. The repeater is placed in a middle of tags which are poorly received and receiver. The program flow is very simple: Scan until advertisement is seen, change own MAC to the MAC of received advertisement, rebroadcast as the original tag, return to scanning.
A few points to consider:
- This firmware eats the battery fast. Expect less than a week of runtime on a RuuviTag running on a coin cell. It’s recommended to feed RuuviTag with external 3.3V, some soldering required.
- The firmware should run on pretty much any nRF52832, including Nordic Devkits which conveniently have USB supplies.
- There is no echo protection, if you put 2 of these next to each other they might bounce data between each other forever.
If you have a Ruuvi DevKit you can flash the firmware binaries from Jenkins or compile the sources yourself. You can also update your SDK12.3 tags which we ship from the Ruuvi Shop over Bluetooth, but there is no way to recover the tags without wired connection if something goes wrong with the update. For now we ask you to not update the SDK over the air unless you have the DevKit available to keep your Ruuvis safe. Typically latest tagged release, such as 0.1.4 is a good starting point.
If you’re interested in this kind of a repeater, please let us know how it works for you and what kind of features you’re expecting or wanting. If the repeater is useful we’ll spend some time in polishing the firmware further.