FAQs

About Beacon Technology (8)

Is Onyx Beacon also an iBeacon™?

Yes, our Onyx Beacons are fully compatible, compliant and certified with Apples iBeacon requirements and specifications.

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Do Onyx Beacons have certifications like FCC, CE, RoHS?

Onyx Beacons are also compliant with these standards FCC, CE, RoHS, REACH and IP65. Certification details (certificates) can be found for our different beacon hardware in the below table.
FCCRoHSCETELEC (Japan)IP65
Beacon One (Model: S1501)
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Enterprise Beacon (Model: E2501)
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Which smartphones and tablets can interact with the Onyx Beacons?

All Bluetooth 4.0 devices should pick up the signals from the Onyx Beacons. The most popular ones are: iPhone 4S, 5, 5C, iPhone 5S, Samsung Galaxy 3, HTC One, Blackberry Z10. You can see a list of devices supported as well as more info on the Bluetooth low energy standard on the Wikipedia page.

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What’s the minimum version of the Android OS?

Your Android device should have at least Android 4.3 installed and should support Bluetooth 4.0

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Can I integrate beacon code into my own existing app?

Yes, you can! We provide SDKs for both iOS and Android, that can be easily integrated into existing mobile apps.

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Do you also provide an iBeacon compatible app for the end users?

Our core business does not include developing apps as well. We only provide demo apps, which will help you in showcasing the functionality of the solution or to get to know the technology better. For specific use-cases, you will need to create your own app and integrate the SDK we provide, available both for iOS and Android.

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Do you provide white label for the Beacons, Content Management System, Management App and SDK?

We do provide white label solution for the Beacons, as well as for the CMS, which means neither the Onyx Beacon logo, nor the name or e-mail addresses will not appear anywhere.

On the other hand, we do not offer white labeling for the Management Application and SDK.

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How often do people turn on their Bluetooth in order for them to receive information from the beacons?

That depends on the way you advertise the fact that you offer your visitors the possibility of receiving relevant content now, more and more people find out about the iBeacon technology.

Soon, people around the world will be aware of the fact that there is relevant information that can be received by only turning their Bluetooth:
1. The Bluetooth low energy (BLE) does not affect the batterylife of the smartphone.
2. Once the Bluetooth was already turned on and interacted with the beacon, the advertiser will be able to send push notifications to remind the visitor to turn the Bluetooth on.

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Beacons - How they work (17)

What are the physical dimensions of your beacons?

The physical dimensions of our beacons are as follows:
  • Beacon One : Diameter (max) – 54 mm ; Thickness (max) – 12 mm
  • Enterprise Beacon : Diameter (max) – 134 mm ; Thickness (max) – 25 mm
For more details about their features visit this link.

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Are Beacons available in different colors?

Onyx Beacons, both Beacon One and Beacon Enterprise, are available in white or black.

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What is the battery life of your beacons?

  • Beacons One have a non-rechargeable battery with a life time of maximum one year, depending on the beacon’s settings. The battery is easily replaceable.
  • Enterprise Beacons have a battery life time up to 4 years. They also can come with a power plug or can be powered via a USB port, depending on your needs.

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What kind of batteries do beacons need?

Beacon One needs Panasonic CR2032 coin cell batteries.

Enterprise Beacon needs 4 AA batteries.

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Can the battery of the beacon be replaced?

Yes, the battery can be easily replaced. A video explaining you the whole process can be found at this link.

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What is beacon range?

Beacon Range was used by the older SDK versions 1.0. It’s the initial version of triggers. If you’re using the newest SDK version you can ignore it and use the campaign triggers for content delivery.

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How close does the user’s phone need to be to the beacons to receive its signals?

Depending on the location, the range of our beacons can be up to 70 m. The closeness to the beacon needed also depends on the triggers used when creating your campaigns, based on the three “zones” from the area around the beacon:
  • Immediate: 0 – 1 m
  • Near: 1 – 10 m
  • Far: >10 m

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How does the interaction between the beacon and the smartphones happen?

The beacon broadcasts a signal via Bluetooth which is received by the smartphone via a mobile app.

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Does the user need to have the app running in order to receive the signals from the beacon?

An app that supports beacons is required to be installed on the device, but the app doesn’t need to run in the foreground in order to receive the signals from the beacon. When the beacon sends a signal, the app can be in the background.

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How does the beacon communicate with the server?

The beacon communicates with the server via the SDK in the smartphone of the user. The way it works is that the beacon broadcasts its ID, the mobile app through the SDK receives this information and asks the server which action (deliver content, retrieve analytics) should be taken for that specific beacon.

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Is it possible to reduce beacon’s signal strength?

Yes, it  is possible, but not as much as to 1 or 2 m. If you need the interaction to happen in that area of the beacon, you can control it through triggers. If you choose the immediate “zone” (0 – 1 m) as a trigger then the content will only be delivered when the customer is in that area of the beacon.

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Do your beacons come with heavy duty tape in order to stick them to any surface?

Yes, our beacons come with heavy duty 3M® VHB® tape which sticks to almost any indoor and outdoor surface. Enterprise Beacons also come with the possibility to screw it with one of the four screw cavities.

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Can anyone else use my beacons by using the UUID, major and minor?

You can prevent this by adding them to a CMS account and syncing them, even if they don’t have any campaigns set up. You just need to have them synced.

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How can I find the UUID of the beacons?

If the beacons are manufactured by us, the UUID can be found in our CMS as follows: Identifiers -> Company UUIDs.

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What is the difference between the Beacon One and the Enterprise Beacon.

  • In size, the Beacon One is smaller than the Enterprise Beacon (see Beacons – Description)
  • The battery life of the Beacon One lasts up to 12 months while the Enterprise Beacon can live up to 48 months
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    Orders (3)

    When are the beacons ready for shipping?

    Beacon One are ready to ship in one day for less than 500 beacons.Enterprise Beacon are ready to ship in one day dor less than 200 beacons.

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    What is your delivery timetable?

    Depending on the country, the delivery time takes between 2-4 days. For US, the shipment takes around 2 up to 3 days and for Europe it can be even 2 days.

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    What are the shipping costs?

    We charge 20 euros for the shipment in the European Union and 35 euros for countries outside of EU.

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    Firmware (2)

    How can we protect the beacons, so that nobody can change their UUID?

    Our Beacons have a high level of security due to a mix of encryption, randomness and simplicity. The encryption is based on a combination of AES-128 and MAC (Message Authentication Code), relying on a dedicated hardware coprocessor embedded in our beacons. The configuration process is greatly simplified by moving away from the mobile client and assigning this responsibility to the server side Beacon Management Software. This provides a secure way to configure and manage large-scale deployments, avoiding beacon loss to UUID hijacking.

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    What exactly is AES-128 Encryption?

    The configuration packet is encrypted using AES-128 CBC. The packet also contains a MAC for packet validation.
    The private key is stored on the beacon and on CMS. A new configuration can be created on phone or on CMS. If it is created on phone, it is sent to CMS for encryption. After the configuration is ready, it is encrypted with the private key and sent to the phone and then transferred to the beacon. If the packet is valid, it is decrypted and new values are applied. If not, the packet is discarded. You need to have a connection between phone and CMS in order to obtain the encrypted version of the config.

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    SDK (8)

    Local notifications and coupons don’t arrive on device when app is in background?

    Please check if you have the content already received before sending the app in background. If you have the content, swipe to left on the cell to delete it. If the content is delivered, then you’ll not receive any notifications.
    If none of this helps, please send the logs from the Xcode console for the sample app and/or try to reproduce this behaviour using OnyxBeacon management app ( https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/onyxbeacon/id866036902?mt=8 ). In the OnyxBeacon app you have to login so the app can load your account info. You have an option to send logs directly from the app.

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    How to activate the sound for the Enterprise Beacons?

    In the current version, the API for enabling buzz on the beacon is not exposed yet. We’ll integrate this feature in one of the next releases of the SDK.

    It is possible to enable buzz on the beacon by connecting to it through CoreBluetooth:

    1. Scan for peripheral devices and read the scan response. Please take a look at the structure of the scan response (advertisementData paramter from centralManager:didDiscoverPeripheral:advertisementData:RSSI: delegate method). You can identify your beacon by using the major and minor values. The UUID field contains the first 4 bytes of the proximity UUID due to scan response size limitations.

    2. After you have identified the peripheral you’re interested in, issue a connect and then scan for services. You should identify a service that has the UUID 2aaceb00-c5a5-44fd-2000-3fd42d703a4f.

    3. After retrieving characteristics for that service, identify the characteristics that have the following UUIDs:

    2aaceb00-c5a5-44fd-2002-3fd42d703a4f – buzz characteristic
    2aaceb00-c5a5-44fd-2002-3fd42d703a4f – extended buzz characteristic

    3.1 Buzz characteristic accepts one byte data with value 0x01. This will enable a buzz that will have 4 beeps at equal intervals of time during 4 seconds.
    3.2 Extended buzz accepts 2 byte data, a bit field where each bit represents the state of buzz, total of 16 bits. There will be a short buzz, a preamble, after which the buzz pattern will be issued. The total length of preamble + 16 flag bits has 4s.

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    The action name for receiving beacons should be in the format of .content.ibeacons?

    The beacon functionality works independently of the coupons. About the implementation, the action filter is right. Check to have mManager.setAPIContentEnabled(true); in the code that initializes the sdk.

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    Can I see if a coupon has been used through the SDK?

    If you delete a coupon using the method deleteCoupon(long couponId), the coupon will be received again after an interval set in the beacon page (CMS) in Message frequency field.

    If you don’t want to receive the coupon again than just delete it from UI. And when you want to be able to receive it again delete it from the SDK using the above method.

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    How does the configuration of the client take place? Is there a possibility of a central configuration option for all the deployed beacons or is it only possible through the app? What configurations can be made here?

    iOS SDK has the support for unattended beacon configuration. The SDK that is integrated in the app that is running on client phone can detect if the beacons that are around need new configuration and will connect and attempt to send the configuration packet.

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    What type of SDK will I get? What is its purpose?

    Our SDK is available for both iOS and Android. It helps you in developing iBeacon compatible mobile apps or to integrate it into existing mobile apps.

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    Content Management System (CMS) (19)

    Why don’t I have any info in the beacon system tab?

    Beacon system tab is updated upon beacon synchronization. For that you should use the iOS beacon management app and synchronize as described in Beacon Management App section. Or you can wait until a campaign content is served through our SDK and the system info is updated.

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    How often does the synchronization process run?

    The sync process is done once a week automatically using the app that implements our SDK, or whenever you want using the management app. You can also request system updates using the checkbox under the column System Data Update Required  in your beacon list. Check it if you want updated system info data upon first beacon content delivery.

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    Why don’t I get any content delivered to my phone?

    1.  Check CMS
  • Do you have your beacons entered in the OnyxBeacon CMS : https://connect.onyxbeacon.com/admin/setup/beacons ?
  • Did you use the correct client id and secret from your OnyxBeacon account?
  • Did you set up a campaign for your beacons: https://connect.onyxbeacon.com/admin/setup/campaigns ? Have you set up the correct locations to your campaign. Is your campaign Enabled? Do you have the proper timeframes setup?

  • 2. Check if your OS (Android and iOS) has the following services enabled: Bluetooth, location services and Wi-Fi / 3G.

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    Can I customize the coupon message freely?

    Yes, you can. By using our CMS you can create the content you want to be sent out. The message can be either a picture, message or link to a website or youtube video

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    How fast do the analytics get updated in the Onyx Beacon CMS?

    Currently there is no restriction, meaning it is close to real time.

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    I am testing your solution and I was able to define and receive content. But why don’t I have any data regarding the analytics on the dashboard?

    The analytics get updated once the visit has ended. This means  you have to get out of the range of the beacons. If you are in the far region of the beacon, the visit is still not considered to have ended, so you should completely get out of its range. Only after this, will the CMS analytics dashboard get updated.

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    Does you CMS also work with beacons from other vendors?

    Yes, it works with beacons from any other vendor. Content can be delivered without any problems. However, you will not be able to change the beacon’s configuration (frequency, power, etc.) or monitor the battery level.

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    Do you offer white label solutions for you CMS?

    Yes, we do. For more details regarding the type of partnerships available please contact us at sales(at)onyxbeacon.com .

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    How do the beacons get updated when we define new campaigns or change the content? Do we need to be close to the beacons for this?

    Content and campaigns are managed through our CMS, so you don’t need to be close to the beacons in order to change content or define new campaigns.

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    Sub-users of an account have visibility over all the campaigns in the parent-account?

    Users created from your account will always be sub-users of your account and can see everything in your account. In order to create a regular user, the client needs to register from your whitelabel page.

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    I have an account on CMS. Can I use the same credentials as the ones for the CMS in order to login to the iOS management app?

    Yes, you can. This is how: Sub-user accounts don’t have access by default to the management app login. For sub-users, you need to specifically enable it from the user Edit page / Management tab / Enable Management App Access checkbox. Normal users created from the register page will have that checkbox enabled by default.

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    How will a push notification work when related to geofecing?

    Using this option, you can send coupon messages based on geofence breach. For now, the geofences are considered your defined locations with a radius of 500 meters.
    The push message will be sent only when the application users enter the location region and only on a specific device status information. For now, the device status that will trigger the notification will be having bluetooth OFF. We created this type of notification especially for this use case, allowing you to notify and invite the users to turn ON their Bluetooth or to directly deliver commercial messages to them, even when they have the Bluetooth OFF.

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    Why do I receive the “An Exception was thrown while handling” response?

    The stream works for beacons assigned to a location. I just noticed that you don’t have any locations and no beacons are assigned to a location.
    The exception you received should have stated that you don’t have any locations, but I don’t know why the text message is not there.

    In order for the stream to work you should create a location and assign the beacons to it. The stream will contain data from beacons at your locations tagged with the “realtime” tag. Unassigned beacons won’t show up in the stream.

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    Why doesn’t the app detect the beacons?

    In order for the beacons to be detected, they need to be configured in our Content Management System. You can do that by following the steps described in the next video demo: Permalink

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    Is there a possibility of allowing other admins into the portal by limiting their access, how does that work?

    Yes, it is possible. A sub-user will have to be created, and all the limitations will have to be selected. By selecting the limitations, the super-user will allow the sub-user fewer, wanted features to be seen and used. For example, you can create a sub-user having access only to a certain location, called location admin sub-user.

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    What is the use of the reference file?

    The reference file is used for a certain media for which you want to keep the name, but change the image; to upload new content for it.

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    How can I change the UUID of the Beacons in CMS?

    Go to Identifiers in header -> click on Company UUIDs -> Add New UUID

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    Beacon Management App (6)

    Why can’t I log in into Management App?

    In order to log in into the Management App you have to enable your account from CMS. In User Management tab, select your account, go to the Management tab and check Enable Management App Access.

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    Next to the battery %, there is a letter – some have “S” and some have “D”. What is their meaning?

    The letter “D” stands for development devices that are not secured. The “S” stands for secure beacons.

    The letter “B”  means that the beacon is an Onyx Beacon.

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    How can I syncronize my beacons?

    The synchronization is done by tapping the top right corner button and then choose synchronize. If the beacons are near you and running, then their information should be updated.

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    I can’t see the beacons in the management app, even though I have followed the instructions.

    Please verify that you have location services and Bluetooth enabled on your device. Also, install OnyxBeacon management app and see if the beacons appear in Radar or Beacons view.

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    I cannot see the beacons in my app. What should I do?

    1.Please check the battery, as it may be dead. You can replace the batteries as described in the User Manual you received together with the beacons.

    2.Check if you have the following services enabled on your phone in order to be able to detect beacons: locations services, Bluetooth. Also, make sure you make an app background refresh.

    3.If it is still not working can you please send us logs so that our developers can proceed with the investigation of the encountered issue? You can do that from: Menu > Settings > Send Logs

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    How does the dwell time trigger work?

    For the dwell time content, we have some limits from the iOS, that closes the app when in background and only an event like enter beacon region, wakes up the app to receive notifications on trigger dwell time.

    For Android, the dwell time content is registered even though the app isn’t in foreground.

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