/ Bluetooth

A simple library that helps you in connecting with BLE devices

A simple library that helps you in connecting with BLE devices

LITTLE BLUETOOTH

LittleBluetooth is a library that helps you developing applications that need to work with a bluetooth low energy device. It is written using Swift and the Combine framework thus is only compatible from iOS13 to upper version. An instance of LittleBluetooth can control only one peripheral, you can use more instances as many peripheral you need, but first read this answer on Apple forums to understand the impact of having more CBCentralManager instances. The library is still on development so use at own you risk.

INSTALLATION

Carthage

Add the following to your Cartfile:

github "DrAma999/LittleBlueTooth" ~> 0.1.0

The library has a sub-dependency with Nordic library Core Bluetooth Mock that helped me in creating unit tests, if you want to launch unit tests you must add this to your dependencies. Unforutnately at the moment the nordic library supports only SwiftPM and Cocoapods.

Swift Package Manager

Add the following dependency to your Package.swift file:

.package(url: "https://github.com/DrAma999/LittleBlueTooth.git", from: "0.1.0")

Or simply add from XCode menu.

FEATURES

  • Built on top of combine
  • Deploys on iOS
  • Chainable operations: scan, connect, start listen, stop listen and read/write . Each operation is executed serially without having to worry in dealing with delegates
  • Peripheral state and bluetooth state observation. You can watch the bluetooth state and also the peripheral state for a more fine grained control in the UI. Of course those information are also checked before starting any operation.
  • Single notification channel: you can subscribe to the notification channel to receive all the data of the enabled characteristics. Of course you have also single and connectable publishers.
  • Write and listen (or better listen and write): sometimes you need to write a command and get a “response” right away
  • Initialization operations: sometimes you want to perform some bluetooth commands right after a connection, for instance an authentication, and you want to perform that before another operation have access to the peripheral.
  • Readable and Writable characteristics: basically those two protocols will deal in reading a Data object to the concrete type you want or writing your concrete type into a Data object.
  • Simplified Error normalization and if you want more you can always access the inner CBError
  • Code coverage > 80%

HOW TO USE IT

Scan

You can scan with or without a timeout, after a timeout you receive a .scanTimeout error. Note that each peripheral found is published to the subscribers chain until you stop the scan request or you connect to a device (when you connect scan is automatically suspended.
Scan and stop:

        // Remember that the AnyCancellable resulting from the `sink` must have a strong reference
        // Also pay attention to eventual retain cycles
        anycanc = littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: [littleChar.service])
        .filter { (discovery) -> Bool in
            print("discovery \(discovery)")
            if let name = discovery.advertisement.localName, name == "PunchLX" {
                return true
            }
            return false
        }
        .flatMap{ (discovery) -> AnyPublisher<Void, LittleBluetoothError> in
            print("Discovery: \(discovery)")
            return self.littleBT.stopDiscovery()
        }
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                // Handle errors
                print("Error: \(error)")
            }
        }, receiveValue: { (periph) in
            print("Discovered Peripheral \(periph)")
        })

Scan with connection:

The scan process is automatically stopped one you start the connection command.

        // Remember that the AnyCancellable resulting from the `sink` must have a strong reference
        // Also pay attention to eventual retain cycles
        anycanc = littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: [littleChar.service])
        .filter { (discovery) -> Bool in
            print("discovery \(discovery)")
            if let name = discovery.advertisement.localName, name == "PunchLX" {
                return true
            }
            return false
        }
        .flatMap { (discovery)-> AnyPublisher<Peripheral, LittleBluetoothError> in
            self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
        }
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                // Handle errors
            }
        }, receiveValue: { (periph) in
            print("Connected Peripheral \(periph)")
        })

Scan with peripherals buffer:

        // Remember that the AnyCancellable resulting from the `sink` must have a strong reference
        // Also pay attention to eventual retain cycles
        anycanc = littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: [littleChar.service])
        .collect(10)
        .map{ (discoveries) -> AnyPublisher<[PeripheralDiscovery], LittleBluetoothError> in
            print("Discoveries: \(discoveries)")
            return self.littleBT.stopDiscovery().map {discoveries}.eraseToAnyPublisher()
        }
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                // Handle errors
                print("Error: \(error)")
            }
        }, receiveValue: { (peripherals) in
            print("Discovered Peripherals \(peripherals)")
        })

Connect

Connection from discovery:

A PeripheralDiscovery is a representation of what you usually get from a scan, it has the UUID of the peripheral and the advertising info.

        // Taken a discovery from scan
        anycanc = self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                // Handle errors
            }
        }, receiveValue: { (periph) in
            print("Connected Peripheral \(periph)")
        })

Direct connection from peripheral identifier:

PeripheralIdentifier is a wrapper around a CBPeripheral identifier, this allows you to connect to a peripheral just knowing the UUID of the peripheral.


         anycanc = self.littleBT.connect(to: peripheralIs)
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                // Handle errors
            }
        }, receiveValue: { (periph) in
            print("Connected Peripheral \(periph)")
        })

Read

Reading from a characteristic:

To read from a characteristic first you have to create an instance of LittleBluetoothCharacteristic and define the data you want to read.

let littleChar = LittleBlueToothCharacteristic(characteristic: "19B10011-E8F2-537E-4F6C-D104768A1214", for: "19B10010-E8F2-537E-4F6C-D104768A1214")

The class or struct that you want to read must conform to the Readable
protocol, basically it means that it can be instantiated from a Data object.

For example here I’m declaring and Acceleration struct that contains acceleration data from a sensor.

struct Acceleration: Readable {
    let measureAx: Float
    let measureAy: Float
    let measureAz: Float
    let measureGx: Float
    let measureGy: Float
    let measureGz: Float

    let timestamp: TimeInterval

    init(from bluetoothData: Data) throws {
        let timeInt: UInt32 = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 0, length: 4)
        timestamp = TimeInterval(exactly: timeInt.littleEndian)! / 1000.0
        var measureInt: Int16 = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 4, length: 2)
        measureAx = Float(measureInt.littleEndian) / 100.0
        measureInt = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 6, length: 2)
        measureAy = Float(measureInt.littleEndian) / 100.0
        measureInt = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 8, length: 2)
        measureAz = Float(measureInt.littleEndian) / 100.0
        var measureGyroInt: Int32 = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 10, length: 4)
        measureGx = Float(measureGyroInt.littleEndian) / 100.0
        measureGyroInt = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 14, length: 4)
        measureGy = Float(measureGyroInt.littleEndian) / 100.0
        measureGyroInt = try bluetoothData.extract(start: 18, length: 4)
        measureGz = Float(measureGyroInt.littleEndian) / 100.0
    }

}

After that is just a matter of call the read method.

        anycanc = littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: [littleChar.service])
        .filter { (discovery) -> Bool in
            if let name = discovery.advertisement.localName, name == "PunchLX" {
                return true
            }
            return false
        }
        .flatMap { (discovery)-> AnyPublisher<Peripheral, LittleBluetoothError> in
            self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
        }
        .flatMap{_ in
            self.littleBT.read(from: self.littleChar, forType: Acceleration.self)
        }
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                print("Error: \(error)")
                // Handle error
            }
        }, receiveValue: { (acc) in
            print("Read \(acc)")
        })

Write

Writing to a characteristic:

To write to a characteristic first you have to create an instance of LittleBluetoothCharacteristic and define the data you want to read.

let littleChar = LittleBlueToothCharacteristic(characteristic: "19B10011-E8F2-537E-4F6C-D104768A1214", for: "19B10010-E8F2-537E-4F6C-D104768A1214")

The class or struct that you want to write must conform to the Writable
protocol, basically it means that it can be converted to a Data object.

For example here I’m declaring an object that simply turns on and off a LED.

struct LedState: Writable {
    let isOn: Bool
    var data: Data {
        return isOn ? Data([0x01]) : Data([0x00])
    }
}

After that is just a matter of call the write publisher.

littleBT.write(to: charateristic, value: ledState)

WriteAndListen:

Sometimes you need to write a command to a “Control point” and read the subsequent reply from the BT device.
This means attach yourself as a listener to a characteristic, write the command and wait for the reply.
This process has been made super simple by using “write and listen”.

        anycanc = littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: nil, options: [CBCentralManagerScanOptionAllowDuplicatesKey : false])
        .flatMap { discovery in
            self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
        }
        .flatMap { _ in
            self.littleBT.writeAndListen(from: littleCharateristic, value: ledState)
        }
        .sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
            print("Result: \(result)")
            switch result {
            case .finished:
                break
            case .failure(let error):
                print("Error: \(error)")
                // Handle error
            }
        }) { (answer: LedState) in
            print("Answer \(answer)")            
        }

Listen

You can listen to a charcteristic in few different ways.

Listen:

After creating your LittleCharacteristic instance, then send the startListen(from:forType:) and attach the subscriber. Of course the object you want to read must conform the Readable object.

anycanc = littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: [littleChar.service])
.filter { (discovery) -> Bool in
    print("discovery \(discovery)")
    if let name = discovery.advertisement.localName, name == "PunchLX" {
        return true
    }
    return false
}
.flatMap { (discovery)-> AnyPublisher<Peripheral, LittleBluetoothError> in
    self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
}
.flatMap{_ in
    self.littleBT.startListen(from: self.littleChar, forType: Acceleration.self)
}
.sink(receiveCompletion: { result in
    print("Result: \(result)")
}, receiveValue: { (acc) in
    print("Read \(acc)")
})

Note: if you stop listening to a characteristic, it doesn’t matter if you have more subscribers. The listen process will stop. It’ s up you to provide the business logic to avoid this behavior.
Connectable listen:

After creating your LittleCharacteristic instance, then send the connectableListenPublisher(for: valueType:). Of course the object you want to read must conform the Readable object.
This is usefull when you want to create more subscribers and attach them later. When you are ready just call the connect() method and notifications will start to stream.

let connectable = littleBT.connectableListenPublisher(for: charateristic, valueType: ButtonState.self)

// First subscriber
connectable
.sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
    print("Completion \(completion)")
}) { (answer) in
    print("Sub1 \(answer)")
}
.store(in: &disposeBag)

// Second subscriber
connectable
.sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
    print("Completion \(completion)")
}) { (answer) in
  print("Sub2: \(answer)")
}
.store(in: &disposeBag)


littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: nil, options: [CBCentralManagerScanOptionAllowDuplicatesKey : false])
.map { disc -> PeripheralDiscovery in
    print("Discovery discovery \(disc)")
    return disc
}
.flatMap { discovery in
    self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
}
.map { _ -> Void in
    self.cancellable = connectable.connect()
    return ()
}
.sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
    print("Completion \(completion)")
}) { (answer) in
    print("Answer \(answer)")
}
.store(in: &disposeBag)

Multiple listen:

If you need to receive more notifications on just one subscriber this publisher is made for you.
Just activate one or more notification and subscribe to the listenPublisher publisher.
It starts to stream all notifications once a peripheral is connected automatically.
Now, it's your responsability to filter and converting Data object from CBCharacteristic to you type.

// First publisher
littleBT.listenPublisher
.filter { charact -> Bool in
        charact.uuid == charateristicOne.characteristic
}
.tryMap { (characteristic) -> ButtonState in
    guard let data = characteristic.value else {
        throw LittleBluetoothError.emptyData
    }
    return try ButtonState(from: data)
}
.mapError { (error) -> LittleBluetoothError in
    if let er = error as? LittleBluetoothError {
        return er
    }
    return .emptyData
}
.sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
        print("Completion \(completion)")
    }) { (answer) in
        print("Sub1: \(answer)")
}
.store(in: &self.disposeBag)

// Second publisher
littleBT.listenPublisher
.filter { charact -> Bool in
        charact.uuid == charateristicTwo.characteristic
}
.tryMap { (characteristic) -> LedState in
    guard let data = characteristic.value else {
        throw LittleBluetoothError.emptyData
    }
    return try LedState(from: data)
}.mapError { (error) -> LittleBluetoothError in
    if let er = error as? LittleBluetoothError {
        return er
    }
    return .emptyData
}
.sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
        print("Completion \(completion)")
    }) { (answer) in
        print("Sub2: \(answer)")
}
.store(in: &self.disposeBag)


littleBT.startDiscovery(withServices: nil, options: [CBCentralManagerScanOptionAllowDuplicatesKey : false])
.map { disc -> PeripheralDiscovery in
        print("Discovery discovery \(disc)")
        return disc
}
.flatMap { discovery in
    self.littleBT.connect(to: discovery)
}
.flatMap { periph in
    self.littleBT.startListen(from: charateristicOne)
}
.flatMap { periph in
    self.littleBT.startListen(from: charateristicTwo)
}
.sink(receiveCompletion: { completion in
    print("Completion \(completion)")
}) { (answer) in
  
}
.store(in: &disposeBag)

Disconnection

Disconnection can be explicit or unexpected.
Explicit when you call the method:

 self.littleBT.disconnect()

Unexpected can be due for different reasons: device reset, device out of range etc

Indipendently if it is unexpected or explicit LittleBlueTooth will clean up everything after registering a disconnection.

Connection event observer

Connection event observer:

The connectionEventPublisher informs you about what happen while you are connected to a device.
A connection event is defined by different states:

  • .connected(PeripheralIdentifier): when a peripheral is connected after a connect command
  • .autoConnected(CBPeripheral): when a peripheral is connected automatically this event is triggered when you use the autoconnectionHandler
  • .connectionFailed(CBPeripheral, error: LittleBluetoothError?): when during a connection something goes wrong
  • .disconnected(CBPeripheral, error: LittleBluetoothError?): when a peripheral ha been disconnected could be from an explicit disconnection or unexpected disconnection

Peripheral state observer:

It can be used for more fine grained control over peripheral states, they comes from the CBPeripheralStates

Initialization operations

Sometimes after a connection you need to perform some repetitive task, for instance an authetication by sending a key or a NONCE.
This operations are stored inside the connectionTasks property and excuted after a connection normal or from an autoconnection. All other operations will be excuted after this has been done.

Autoconnection

The autoconnection is managed by the autoconnectionHandler handler.
You can inspect the error and decide if an automatic connection is necessary.
If you return true the connection process will start, once the peripheral has been found a connection will be established. If you return false iOS will not try to establish a connection.
Connection process will remain active also in background if the app has the right
permission, to cancel just call disconnect.
When a connection will be established an .autoConnected(PeripheralIdentifier) event will be streamed to the connectionEventPublisher
If you want to cancel it you have to send an explicit disconnection.

Autoconnection will be interrupted in these condition:

App Permission Conditions
App has no BT permission to run in bkg Explicit disconnection, App killed by user/system, when suspended
App has BT permission to run in bkg Explicit disconnection, App killed by user/system

ROADMAP

  • [x] SwiftPM support
  • [ ] State preservation and state restoration
  • [ ] Implement descriptors
  • [ ] Improve code coverage
  • [ ] CBManager and CBPeripheral extraction
  • [ ] Add multiple peripheral support
  • [ ] Add support to: macOS, watchOS, tvOS

GitHub

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