Delay when getting in range of a beacon


I am new to the group and beacon development.
I just downloaded a template (Proximity Content for a single beacon when in and out of range).

It works just fine, but I am curious why, when I am clearly in line of site (outdoors) of the beacon no other beacons around the delay time for the phone to discover the beacon is more than a few seconds.

Is it possible to cut that delay time down?

Thank you

Warm welcome! (:

It’s just like with discovering WiFi networks, or Bluetooth accessories to pair with—it does sometimes take a little bit of time. There’s two factors at play:

  1. The beacon itself broadcasts packets every advertisingInterval, which defaults to 950 ms, or 300 ms for newer Estimote Beacons. And the packets sometimes get lost (clear line of sight and being close to a beacon help), so it might take more than one broadcast to discover the beacon. This factory you can control by simply lowering your beacon’s advertising interval, so that it broadcasts more often. (Note that this will impact the battery life.)

  2. Smartphones (or any receiving devices) also vary when it comes to responsiveness of detection. For example, for some of the lower-end Android devices, it sometimes might even take 10–20 seconds to detect a packet. iPhone and higher-end Androids usually do much better, but a few-second response times are still to be expected. Here, there’s little you can actually do to improve it—iOS doesn’t give you any options to control the responsiveness of scanning. Android is more flexible, but our Android SDK is already set to most aggressive settings when doing ranging (which is what Proximity Content uses), so not much room for improvement here.

Oh, one more idea: you can try bumping your beacon’s broadcasting/transmit power—this way, it’ll be detectable from farther away, which might give the impression of better responsiveness.

What project/app do you have in mind for your beacons?

1 Like

Thank you for your response.

I am looking to use the beacons for tours of historic sites in the city.

When a potential iPhone user comes in proximity of a beacon on let’s say a church or museum they would be prompted to download our app that would give multi-language tours of the location.

For the most part the user/visitor would already have signed up for a tour of the facility so they would be in a location where we could alert them with signage about the beacon.

But I also envisioned walking tours where Beacons along a pathway could alert a walker about particular points of interest as they approach.

Hoping this vision is still possible.

Thanks for your insight


P.S. Has anyone run into issues with city ordinances when placing Beacons in public spaces?