The Bluetooth Smart SDK released by Nordic Semiconductor is a port of an existing SDK available for the nRF8001 Bluetooth Smart connectivity device. It is available as a repository on GitHub which allows subscribers to ‘fork’ their own versions and make ‘pull’ requests to modify and improve the SDK. It contains lots of examples including a human interface device, UART over Bluetooth low energy, heart rate monitor, temperature sensing and proximity detection.
The Bluetooth Smart SDK for Arduino software interface has been implemented on a number of microcontrollers and microcontroller platforms including ChipKIT, Maple, Teensy and mbed. This gives the designer the flexibility to transfer a project developed on an Arduino platform to an alternative platform with minimum fuss.
The SDK is complemented by the Bluetooth Smart BLE Arduino shield from Red Bear Lab (see photo). This has all the necessary interfaces to enable an Arduino project to start communicating with Android and iOS devices as well as Windows 8 and OS X, Bluetooth Smart capable machines.
Chief engineer Poon Yuk-Cheong at Red Bear Labs said that "Bluetooth Smart, also known as Bluetooth low-energy is a new technology and developers are keen to explore its possibilities. They are also seeking methods that allow fast prototyping and easier software development. Nordic Semiconductor has provided the necessary means to help these developers with the nRF8001 SDK for Arduino. It is complete, open source and free of charge. It is the easiest way to learn how Bluetooth low energy works. The tutorials that come with the SDK are a very nice introduction for Bluetooth Smart beginners”.