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ios – Is it possible to use a BLE enabled Android/iPhone as a BLE beacon?

Posted by: admin June 15, 2020 Leave a comment


I’m working on a BLE proximity sensing feature based on Android and need some information.
Currently I see there are no BLE beacons manufacturers for android. I found 2 so far for iPhone.
1) http://www.estimote.com
2) http://www.gimbal.com

Estimote claims that their devices are generic but mainly they are publicized for iBeacons. So I’m not sure whether I should order them for a feature on Android.
Secondly gimbal explicitly mentions that their devices won’t be enabled for android for proximity sensing.

So if any of you know where can I order BLE beacons compatible with Android please let me know.

Another thing, for prototype testing I was wondering whether I could use a Android BLE capable tablet or smartphone as a beacon to emit BLE signals?
Till now the documentation for android only suggests how to detect a beacon, But I’m not sure whether an Android device can be used as a beacon.
Any insights?

How to&Answers:

There is a BLE Beacon manufacturer for Android: Radius Networks

You can detect any standard iBeacon on Android using our Android iBeacon Library.

You can try it out yourself with our free iBeacon Locate app, which is based on this library. My company also sells both software and hardware iBeacons that I guarantee work with Android. But again, any standard iBeacon will work, too. Don’t take my word for it — just download our free app and use it to see one of our iBeacons. (We even have a free virtual machine you can use!)

It is currently not possible to make an iBeacon out of a stock Android device because the Bluetooth LE APIs, introduced in Android 4.3, do not support the peripheral mode needed to transmit advertisements like an iBeacon.

EDIT: It is now possible to make rooted Android 4.4.3 devices transmit as an iBeacon. See here.


I tried simple BLE scan app on Android, but the callback for LeDevices always returned null for UUID[]. Also, finding based on know UUID didnot work.

To add to David’s reply. I have tried Radius Networks SDK, pretty clean. I like it.

Also, Estimotes has released their Android SDK today(1/7), which is good. The sample App shows notification, Distance, Major-Minor. I tested with 3 Estimotes & also with iPhone’s app (making the iPhone as iBeacon). It works well, give it a try.
Note that you have to modify the code
change the ESTIMOTE_PROXIMITY_UUID value to the UUID that you are watching for.

Hope it helps.