What are Estimote Stickers?

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Stickers are the next generation of tiny BLE beacons, providing mobile apps with context of physical objects.

Create nearables

Beacons provide location context for venues. Stickers do the same for physical objects. To turn any item into a nearable, just attach a sticker to it. A Nearable is a smart object broadcasting data about its location, motion, and environment to a mobile device in range. With nearables, you’re able to design a contextually aware app for everything around you - your plant, dog’s collar, or purse.

Read more about the vision behind nearables.

What’s inside?

Stickers are adhesive on one side. There’s a small PCB inside and it can broadcast a Bluetooth Smart signal up to about 15 meters (50 feet). The advertising interval is dynamically adjusted by our adaptive algorithms, to optimize for energy efficiency and signal stability. Currently, settings cannot be edited.

Depending on usage, the battery can work for even a year. Stickers also have an accelerometer and temperature sensor. Stickers are waterproof, however, extreme weather conditions can impact performance. For example, heavy rain can limit the range and very high/low temperature can decrease battery life.

How to develop an app for stickers? What's new in comparison to beacons?

You can find Estimote SDK on GitHub. You can use ranging and monitoring with stickers, just like in the iBeacon standard. However, instead of UUID, Major and Minor values, the sticker regions are defined by sticker type (for example fridge, dog, computer etc) and sticker ID.

It's important to note that in case of region monitoring, there is no limit of number of sticker regions an app can be monitoring for at the same time. On top of that, triggers allow you to add another layer of context to your app, based on timestamps and data from the accelerometer and temperature sensor in the sticker.

Alternatively, you can change the primary packet to iBeacon and follow the same logic as you would with Estimote Beacons. Or, set a sticker to Eddystone-URL and broadcast a link to a webpage.

Data packet

Stickers broadcast our own Nearable protocol, which includes the following data:

  • sticker type (for example fridge, dog, computer etc.)
  • sticker ID (numerical value)
  • orientation in space
  • motion in X, Y, Z
  • temperature
  • broadcasting power (used to calculate proximity)
  • battery level
  • firmware version 

Estimote Stickers also support both iBeacon and Eddystone-URL (from firmware version 1.3).Settings are adjustable for both packets, including changing UUID, Major, and Minor for iBeacon. See how to change the packets here: 

How can I adjust stickers’ settings?

To order Estimote Stickers go to estimote.com

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20 Comment(s)

  • Avatar
    KnowCenterDeveloper

    Where can i find information about the dimension (width, extent) of the stickers.
    Thanks in advance!

  • Avatar
    Wojtek Borowicz

    Hi,

    The stickers are about 3mm thin. Detailed specs will be published in the near future.

    Cheers.

  • Avatar
    Ed Gonzalez

    On the sticker beacons, can the UDID, major, and minor be configured by the user?

  • Avatar
    Wojtek Borowicz

    Hi Ed,

    After lots of iterations and trying different approaches, we've decided to use a different protocol for stickers, so they won't be identified by the iBeacon standard combination of UUID/Major/Minor.

    Cheers.

  • Avatar
    Panagiotis

    Hi,

    Can I use the stickers to develop app on android? Also, the maximum range is 10 meters or longer?
    Thanks in advance.

  • Avatar
    Wojtek Borowicz

    Hi Panagiotis,

    Currently only our iOS SDK has support for stickers, but we're planning to invest heavily in Android later this year.

    The range is about 10 meters.

    Cheers.

  • Avatar
    Praveen Achuthan

    Suppose the object with the estimote sticker moves around in a rectangular space very fast ,will the sticker broadcast all the motion points ? How fast would the sticker broadcast the motion points ? Are there any constraints ?

  • Avatar
    Jacek Kurnik

    Hi Praveen,

    Sticker's advertising interval is controlled by a smart, adaptive algorithm that ensures great responsiveness when stickers are in use and also saves battery life. I would not recommend stickers for tracking the motion of an object moving at high speeds as the radio waves fluctuations and adaptive algorithm can lead to a very inconsistent results.

    Best,

  • Avatar
    Fred Neethling

    Hi I am really interested in your beacons. I want to get a kit and start playing around with it. Would you recommend the beacons or the stickers?
    I dont have any developing skills is it worth it then to get them?

  • Avatar
    Wojtek Borowicz

    Hi Fred,

    Those are development kits and at least basic knowledge of Objective-C or Swift is highly recommended. But if you want to learn programming and play around with this technology, I'd recommend using the original beacons, for two main reasons:
    1. Beacons are available immediately. Stickers are shipping in limited quantities and you'll need to wait a few weeks to receive them after you place your order.
    2. Beacons are based on standard iBeacon protocol, while stickers use our brand new nearables protocol. It's (obviously) awesome, but considering your lack of programming experience it would make more sense to start with iBeacon, because there's more documentation and tutorials available for it, both from Estimote and all around the web.

    Cheers.

  • Avatar
    Paul Freeman

    I can see the reasoning behind 'typing' the physical beacons for consumer use but for early adopters/developers isn't this a bit limiting. I mean I don't have a dog... maybe I should get one if I get your sticker kit.

    More seriously, what is the actual difference between differently marked stickers? If I buy a kit will I end up throwing away 90% of them that won't meet up with the needs of my application?

  • Avatar
    Jacek Kurnik

    Hi Paul,

    You are referring to a Dev Kit which is specially prepared for testing purposes. If you have already developed an app & planning to deploy, but the icons on your stickers worsen the experience, we will be glad to hear more about your solution and provide you with blank stickers.

    Best regards,

  • Avatar
    Paul Freeman

    Can I say that I've had my hands on the stickers this weekend and I think they area fantastic product. For experimentation purposes the colours and designs are helpful. I didn't mean to be critical I was curious, now I understand they are position purely as a development kit I 'get it'.

    One note, after you stick them on something then don't try to peel them off unless you are very careful. A colleague peeled one off his laptop and stuck it to mine and that appears to have killed it.

  • Avatar
    Paul Freeman

    Seems I can't edit comments, I would like to omit the word 'purely' in the previous comment, these may be in a dev kit but are useful in themselves.

  • Avatar
    Wojtek Borowicz

    Hi Paul,

    Thanks a lot for sharing your thoughts! We're aware that they might be a tad fragile, so we're also experimenting with a different PCB that's more flexible and will be less prone to damage when unattaching from objects.

    Cheers.

  • Avatar
    Shardul Patel

    Hi,

    I got my stickers developer kit few weeks ago. I checked the API and demo applications. As far as i understood I think it doesn't require en dusers to turn on location service in their iPhone, it just requires Bluetooth to be turned on and as a developer I can't change major and minor ID of any Nearable.

    Am I right or I understood anything wrong?
    Because if i am not able to change major and minor id of my Nearables then its useless for my use case.

  • Avatar
    Ula Kierwiak

    Hi Shardul,

    You are correct, Major and Minor of a sticker are preset and at this point we are not allowing users to change it. Have you tried to create regions using nearable's type instead? If you care to elaborate on your use case, maybe I'll be able to help?

  • Avatar
    Wojtek Borowicz

    Hi Shardul,

    To add to what Ula has written: your app will need Location Services enabled to be able to monitor for stickers. It's only ranging for stickers that does not require Location Services.

    Cheers.

  • Avatar
    david rossellat
    Just curious, if the mobile device is out of range, will the sticker store the broadcast information for the time being, i.e. my dog runs away with a sticker on its collar, when the dog is finally in proximity of my phone, will I be able to tell where it went?
  • Avatar
    SVI

    I would like to know if the beacon can add temperature date and pression as parameter in the url sent.
    eg: https://www.xxx.zz?temp=[temperature]&pression=[pression]

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