Serialio

FAQ'S

What is MFi?

Bluetooth MFi is Apple’s licensing program for hardware and software specific to their iDevices. MFi, or Made for iOS (iPod/iPhone/iPad), in hardware like the Scanfob® 3002i denotes a special Bluetooth connection mode called IAP. IAP is similar to SPP on Android — which allows a peripheral device to connect as a virtual COM port. This capability allows software developers to interface peripherals directly with their apps. Simulating a virtual COM port means that scans are sent faster and more reliably. Simulated COM ports have the additional benefit of being able to send special characters or information that you would

Read More »

What’s the difference between Bluetooth LE and Bluetooth SPP (BLE vs SPP)?

Bluetooth LE and Bluetooth SPP are both Bluetooth profiles (sometimes called “pairing modes”). One practical difference between the two aforementioned Bluetooth profiles is the pairing process. Bluetooth SPP typically requires you to pair with the host operating system (through Bluetooth settings), then with the individual application (such as SerialMagic Gears or Cloud-In-Hand Mobile Grid). On the other hand, Bluetooth LE only requires that you pair with the individual application. Unlike Bluetooth SPP (which isn’t supported on iOS devices; iPhones and iPads use Apple’s proprietary profile Bluetooth iAP/MFi instead), the process for pairing via

Read More »

What are control characters?

Control characters are characters that do not representable a printable character but instead serves to initiate a specific action. There are various types of control characters, including printing control characters, data structuring control characters, and transmission control characters—many of which are often used in the prefix or suffix configurations of barcode and RFID scanners. Some applications, such as SerialMagic Gears allow you to append a control character to scan data at the software level.  The table below provides information regarding some of the more common ASCII control characters. Control Character Name Explanation SOH

Read More »

What is UHF?

UHF (Ultra High Frequency) is the Internation Telecommunications Union‘s designation for radio frequency identification in the range between 300 MHz and 3 GHz. The UHF frequency range is further allocated for various purposes that vary by geographical location (see the Wikipedia page for UHF for more information on UHF frequency allocations). UHF is used for television broadcasting, cell phones, GPS, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and RFID business applications that require longer read ranges than lower frequency bands can provide (think livestock tracking and race timing).  To learn more about UHF, click here.

Read More »

What is NFC?

NFC is an acronym for Near Field Communication. NFC is a fairly recent ‘labeling’ for a subset of RFID (Radio Frequency Identification) for short-range, wireless protocols. It’s most commonly used for close-range applications (hence the “near field”). NFC has some features that distinguish it from other forms of RFID, such as the capacity for bidirectional peer-to-peer communication.  To learn more about NFC, click here.

Read More »

What is RFID?

RFID (Radio-frequency identification) is a term used to refer to technology that uses electromagnetic fields to automatically identify people, livestock, assets, and more. To learn more about RFID, see our article on the topic here.

Read More »

Which scanner should I choose? A Barcode Scanner Buyer’s Guide

Why Consider Purchasing a Barcode Scanner? Barcodes and barcode scanners have long been used for decades for quick, easy and error-free data collection. Now, with modern wireless Bluetooth scanners, and their compatibility mobile devices like Android and iOS, barcode scanning is easier than ever. What Should You Consider When Selecting A Barcode Scanner? ♦ What is your scan environment? Office, warehouse, outdoors?♦ What type of barcodes will you be scanning? 1D or 2D or both?♦ Do you need scan barcodes from a screen, i.e. scan a barcode displayed on a mobile screen?♦ What is your

Read More »

QR codes, barcodes, and RFID: What’s the difference?

Barcodes Barcodes have been around for decades. They are versatile with a large variety of uses — especially in retail, manufacturing settings, and in transport and shipping. We’re used to seeing the common barcode printed on packaging at the grocery store or in other retail outlets, like when items are passed over the barcode reader at the checkout counter to ring up a sale. Barcodes not only are valuable at the point of sale but also for managing inventory and raw materials internally so that tracking is done accurately and without

Read More »