The Ruuvi only broadcasts 30m?

I have followed the instructions on the Ruu.vi/setup and got started using my Ruuvi as a proximity bluetooth beacon, but after doing various tests all day I have come to the conclusion that the accurate range of the broadcast is only around 30m!

Now, the reason I expected more from the Ruuvi was beacuse of the superior antenna you guys stated on your website that it had and the 'range video on youtube’ - which showed a user’s device still broadcasting eddystone url 500m away!

So, my question is (judging that it’s even possible!) how can I increase the range? Are there additonal settings I must employ to ‘open’ the Ruuvi’s potential up? What;s this “untuned antenna” that is referreed to in the YouTube description box?

Anyway, my Ruuvi wasn’t indoors when I did these tests, I placed it outside (open air) and still only got 30m! Very frustrating to say the least!

My configuration settings on ‘nRF Beacon for Eddystone’ are:

URL: https
Ad. interval: 300ms (also I’ll add this here, would 100 or 10 or even 1ms be a better setting, as I want to broadcast as fast as possible? If so what would that do to the device and battery etc?)

Radio Tx Power: 4dBm

There is also an additional Adv. Tx Power setting which allows you increase the broadcasting power to 20dBM - not too sure if this helps or not though as I have not seen even the slightest increase in range from using this and the 4dBm power levels - both are still broadcasting up to 30m. Which I think is crazy ridiculous.

Also, when I use my ‘Beacon Scanner’ app and emply the higher dBm settings I get the device showing me on the left hand side…

Distance and underneath crazy numbers like 22000m! Is this telling me how far I can broadcast or what? It totally confuses me!

Anway sorry for the long winded post and thank you for reading it.

Peace!

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30 m broadcast sounds too short.
The Youtube video was shot in product development stage before antenna tuning. Nordic Semiconductor kindly assisted us by measuring the antenna which led to final, properly tuned antenna.

I think 100ms is minimum broadcast interval. Faster broadcasting consumes battery faster.
Radio TX power is the physical power used in broadcast, 4 dBm is correct setting.

Advertised TX power is what your device says the broadcast power to be. You should set the tag on table, measure RSSI ~1 m away, add 41 dBm to that value and use the calculated calue as advertised TX power. 41 dBm is added because the Eddystone spec is defines the advertised power at 0 m, but you have measured at 1m. More details can be found here.

This is also why you had estimated 22 000 m range to beacon: The beacon advertised a lot more power than it actually had, and on receiving weaker signal your phone thought it must be really far away.

Have you tested the range on Ruuvi firmware?

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Thank you for your fast reply.

I tested the Ruuvi again last night and I am still getting around 30m range, which I know sounds too short but it’s the truth!

Settings used were:

Radio Tx Power: 4dBm

*note: when I use the -dBm settings I can actually control how far my URL is broadcast; which leads me to believe that if I am using the highest power setting for broadcasting then the 30m (which I have got after more than a handful of tests ) must be the actual limit of the broadcasting power of the device itself?

Is there anyway to ‘undo’ the antenna tuning so I can emulate the results you got in that video? Because what’s the point in demonstrating something that you don’t expect people to use? If it is possible could you instruct me where to learn more about longer ble ranges and antennas to use in conjunction with your device or how to truly harness ruuvi range capabilities for broadcasting eddystone url’s? That’s the only reason I wish to use this technology currently: to broadcast my URL’s.

Besides, is it even possible to get a ‘nearby notification’ sent from a device 500 metres+ away? I am led to think that it just hasn’t been designed that way? The rnage test you guys did was it broadcasting eddystone URL’s that far away?

Oh yes thank you for explaining what is the best broadcast interval for me, the “100ms” - I’ve taken note!

Okay, so I have just done what you instructed me to do, I:

  1. Set Ruuvi on a table 1m away
  2. I opened up my Beacon scanner to see the RSSI, which read -62 *note: it was fluctuating, so I got the mean
  3. I then added 41dBm to the RSSI reading of -62 to which I got: -21

So I take it that is my adv. TX power? And furthermore what’s the point in my device telling me what my broadcast power is if I can never use it anyway? And in this ase it was -21! Is that normal? What should have I expected?

Even on my beacon scanner I am still getting a distance of 20m+ (it fluctuates very rapidly) from the beacon, which is not true as it’s only 1m away!

All I want to do is get a better range out of this device, is this even possible?

And what do you mean by testing the firmware? How can I achieve this? What must I do?

Thanks for taking the time to read through!

What phone and scanner are you using? Could you try if another RuuviTag unit gives you same results?

Yes, on the video RuuviTag was broadcasting Eddystone-URL packets at +4dBm.

Hey Lauri,

I am using a Samsung Galaxy S7, Beacon Scanner & Beacon Toy.

Just tested another RuuviTag and got the same results - around 30metres but the scanner says the beacon is 100metres away and this is just simply not accurate!

I was told by one of your employees that the RuuviTag’s antenna was untuned for you to get the resuts that you did in that video, which I why I asked if the tuning of the antenna could be reversed - if so how would I do that?

Also can you please tell me how to test the range usuing the firmware?

Thanks, and if you can could you go through what I wrote and answer my pressing questions, this would help me a great deal as I’m not deeply technical-oriented and technology like this is harder for me to comprehend.

Thanks again,

Carlos

[quote=“Method2damadness, post:5, topic:608”]
I am using a Samsung Galaxy S7, Beacon Scanner & Beacon Toy.[/quote]
Please try with another phone and nRF Connect mobile app. I recently noticed my S8 has a poor antenna…

[quote=“Method2damadness, post:5, topic:608”]

Just tested another RuuviTag and got the same results - around 30metres but the scanner says the beacon is 100metres away and this is just simply not accurate![/quote]
Unfortunately, it’s true that by approximating distance using signal strength is no accurate. It’s more like, “really close, near, far, out of range”. You can try tools to make the accuracy better (multiple beacons):

[quote=“Method2damadness, post:5, topic:608”]
I was told by one of your employees that the RuuviTag’s antenna was untuned for you to get the resuts that you did in that video, which I why I asked if the tuning of the antenna could be reversed - if so how would I do that?[/quote]

Sorry, no. There is nothing wrong with the circuit board’s antenna and it should not be modified. The main chip (nRF52832) or some soldering can be defective on your unit and if this is the case, we’ll of course give you a replacement.

EDIT: A note for others: This issue was discussed on Slack in more detail… We’ll try to find the reason :slight_smile:

I have tried multiple phones , tablets and applications and the most I can get out of a ruuvi take is 130 meters with an iPhone is the best I could get. Way less than the videos imply. Very disappointed. I would love to find out how to get the implied distance of the video

The range is always a sum of variables such obstacles, environment, receiver, TX power etc.

@FutureChalk Please make sure you use +4dBm TX power and that the phone has line of sight to the Tag. If you didn’t, you can try to set up your Eddystone configs to 100ms / +4dBm.

Recently, I configured my ruuvi and also i get short distances. I done different tests and the maximun distance reach is 45 meter. I used a huawei honor 8x and xiaomi mi a2. Please, Which is it the cause?.

Hello,

There’s a few potential causes.

  • Is there a clear line of sight?
  • Is the RuuviTag directly attached to metal, concrete, rock or some other metallic material?
  • Is the environment noisy, i.e. lots of 2.4 GHz devices?

Hi

Is there a clear line of sight? Yes, there is a clear line of sight

  • Is the RuuviTag directly attached to metal, concrete, rock or some other metallic material?.no, ruvitag is held by a person,
  • Is the environment noisy, i.e. lots of 2.4 GHz devices?. Not a lot of,

thakns for your response

Hello,

Please try setting RuuviTag on a plastic or a dry wooden surface and try again. Hand holding the tag has lots of water in it and therefore it can detune the antenna. If you want to reach optimal range you should setup an environment like in this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wRpW2KIPfVo

  • Ruuvi is hanging in free air, facing the receiver
  • The tag is high above ground
  • The environment is a small city, i.e. minimal interference.

The range reached in that video is approximately 500 m, in practice we have often seen 100 - 250 m when tag is a bit about ground level on a good surface, for example lying on wooden fence outdoors.