# Bluetooth communication with smartphone, options?

I am working on a device which I may want to consider mass producing. The device connects to a smartphone over a Bluetooth connection. For prototyping purposes I have used the very common HC-05 module which makes life very easy. But I do not expect that this device would be ideal for mass production as I can't find a good source for a lot of them and they are expensive (perhaps I am wrong about these arguments) as opposed to a SoC. I was considering the NRF8001 but the problem is that it seems to be a Bluetooth low energy chip, so a lot of older smartphones won't support this. I read somewhere that this chip supports both BLE and Classic, but can't find out about this definitively. I pretty much read through the entire data sheet, and am quite happy with the way this chip is expected to work otherwise and am ready to purchase the $99 dev kit. I also found the CC2560 from Texas Instruments, but I can't find a lot of information on it aside from the TI website, so am not sure if it's the best solution. I'd rather use something popular so that I can get more support. I am relatively new to the world of embedded systems, and I definitely do not intend for this to be a shopping question, but I would like to know what you all recommend (i.e. are any of the above solutions viable, or are there other chips/modules out there I should consider)? I find the SPP (Serial Port Profile) very easy to use, and substantial for my needs. I don't have any intense technical requirements. If I can send a byte of data every second or so, I am more than happy. The range does not need to exceed 5-6 meters. I am interfacing the Bluetooth chip with an AVR microcontroller. I am fine with using the USART, SPI, or I2C to communicate. In terms of cost, it should be a cheap solution ($3 - 7). Using things like Rn-42, JY-MCU, etc. are fine for proof of concepts, but don't make the cut for mass production.

• The RF modules by themselves are FCC certified. That usually streamlines certification of the finished product. – Nick Alexeev Aug 15 '13 at 1:41
• @NickAlexeev Thanks, but that doesn't really answer my question, unfortunately. – piepi Aug 15 '13 at 13:49
• Just curious, but if you contact rovingnetworks.com or digikey, do they not provide a discount when you want to mass produce? What was the quote you got at the volume you want? I'm personally a big fan of the RN-42. – Rich Aug 15 '13 at 20:51
• @Roak Whatever it is, it's going to be more than $12 or so. When I can get the NRF8001 for ~$3.50, it seems much more attractive from an economical standpoint. Higher margins for me, lower prices for my customers. I'll look into it a bit more though. I was checking out the RN-42 for HID applications. Also, it's relatively large. – piepi Aug 16 '13 at 15:02
• I'd really like to know this too. Offering a bounty. – capcom Aug 17 '13 at 16:48