IDBLUE Frequently Asked Questions

If any of these questions don’t seem to apply to your issue, please contact IDBLUE Support and we can walk you through any issues you might be encountering.


IDBLUE Questions

When using the HID version of IDBLUE devices, I don’t have the onscreen keyboard anymore!

This is a known issue with HID profile devices in general. Our IDBLUE HID profile device is recognized as a secondary keyboard and, by default, a smartphone may disable viewing the onscreen keyboard.

iOS:

You can toggle the onscreen keyboard by pressing the power button when connected.

Android:

Once you pair with the IDBLUE HID device:

  • Go to Settings and select “Language and input”.
  • Click on “Default” (Or “Current Keyboard” in Android 5.0+) located just under the “Keyboard and input methods” heading to open the “Choose input method” dialog.
  • Turn the “Hardware physical keyboard” OFF (or on Android 5.0+, it’s referred to “Hardware: Show input method”.

This setting will toggle the onscreen keyboard when you select a text field when paired with our HID profile device. If you have any other questions, please contact IDBLUE Support.

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What are IDBLUE.HF and IDBLUE.UHF?

IDBLUE.HF is the world’s first mobile Bluetooth enabled HF RFID reader while IDBLUE.UHF is our latest product which is our mobile Bluetooth enabled UHF RFID reader.

With a compact pen-shaped design complete with stylus tip, IDBLUE RFID readers are ideal for scenarios requiring human workflow such as MRO, healthcare, tracking and traceability. For more information, visit the IDBLUE RFID Readers page.

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What frequency do IDBLUE RFID readers work on?

IDBLUE.HF is a High Frequency (HF) RFID reader able to read HF tags at 13.56 MHz using the ISO15693 protocol. For more information, please see our IDBLUE.HF product page.

IDBLUE.UHF is a Ultra High Frequency (UHF) RFID reader able to read UHF tags at 902MHz to 928MHz (915MHz center frequency) using the EPC Gen 2, ISO 18000-6C protocol. For more information, please see our IDBLUE.UHF product page.

NOTE: The UHF spectrum is regulated independently by country (which is different than the HF spectrum). Please refer to the EPCglobal > Implementation page (under Section UHF Regulations) for more detailed information. To make sure there are no compatibility issues, the UHF tag and reader have to be using compatible frequency ranges.

To determine if IDBLUE.HF or IDBLUE.UHF devices are a best fit for your project depends on the tags you want to use as well as how you want to use our devices. Our Sales Team can provide valuable insight into which one would be a best fit for your project.

For more information, please contact our IDBLUE Sales Team.

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What protocols do IDBLUE RFID readers support?

IDBLUE.HF supports the following protocols

  • ISO 15693
  • Tag-it TM HF/HFI
  • Phillips I-Code SL1/Sl2

IDBLUE.UHF supports the following protocols

  • EPC Gen 2

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What is the read range of an IDBLUE RFID reader?

Our readers are a near proximity reader designed for scenarios requiring human workflow and pinpointing items and thus, designed to read at ranges of 2 to 4 cm, depending on the form factor of the RFID tag in question.

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Does IDBLUE.HF have any internal onboard memory for situations when connection to an application is not possible?

Absolutely! IDBLUE.HF contains onboard memory capable of storing up to 1000 entries which includes the Tag UID, user readable data and timestamp of when the read took place. NOTE: This feature is not currently available for our IDBLUE.UHF readers.

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Are IDBLUE.HF and IDBLUE.UHF devices FCC Certified?

IDBLUE.HF has compliance with

  • FCC Part 15 – Subpart C, Paragraph 15.225
  • Industry Canada RSS-210, Issue 8 for Operation in the band 13.110 to 14.010 MHz.
  • All tests were conducted using measurement procedure ANSI C63.4-2003.

IDBLUE.UHF has compliance with

  • FCC Part 15 – Subpart C
  • CSA
  • IP54

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How does IDBLUE devices communicate with a computer?

Communication with a Pocket PC, tablets, laptops and PCs is provided over Bluetooth and USB.

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My IDBLUE device isn’t scanning properly. Help!

Diagnosing Tag Scanning Issues:

For a detailed description on how to properly scan for a tag, please refer to the User’s Guide on our IDBLUE Documentation page.
If a device is not able to read a tag, you can verify by attempting to scan a tag in Disconnected/Tag Verify Mode. When not connected to a host and attempting to scan a tag, the Action LED should go:

  • Blue to indicate a read is being attempted, then go
  • Green to indicate a tag was detected and was read successfully
  • Red to indicate a tag was detected but it was an incompatible tag.

If the read action times out, it did not successfully detect a tag within range during the RFID Timeout device property setting.

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My capacitive stylus tip is damaged/lost. How do I get a replacement?

If a device has a damaged/torn/missing tip (does not work with a capacitive screen device), the tip and ring that hold it in place are easily replaceable and spares are available upon request. Please contact IDBLUE Support for more information.

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Are there any proper handling procedures for IDBLUE devices?

IDBLUE devices are always using power (even small amounts when off to maintain the device internal clock ). To prevent permanent battery damage when the battery is left at critically low levels for long periods, customers must follow proper handling procedures to maintain battery integrity  – including recommended procedures for long-term storage.

IDBLUE Device Handling Procedures

IDBLUE devices use a permanent Lithium Ion battery and must follow proper handling procedures to maintain maximum battery life.

  • The devices are shipped with a partially charged battery in order to maximize battery life.
  • Devices need to be charged fully before using. Fully charging a battery should take up to 2 hours on a dedicated USB 2.0 compliant charger.
  • You can get ~8 hours device usage time on a full battery charge.
  • If the battery cannot maintain a charge for long periods of time, even when they are charged correctly, it may indicate the battery life has been compromised.
  • Battery performance will deteriorate over time even if stored for a long period of time without being used.
  • For long term storage, it is recommended the battery be charged every 60 days maximum to maintain battery performance.

DON’T:

  • Don’t charge any device that may be damaged or swollen.
  • Don’t continue charging if any part of the device is getting warm.
  • Don’t charge batteries unattended, always remain alert and monitor the charging process.
  • Don’t use or leave the device at very high temperature (for example, at strong direct sunlight or in a vehicle in extremely hot weather). Otherwise, it can overheat/catch fire or device performance may be compromised.
  • Don’t attempt to repair/replace the battery.

Failure to follow these handing procedures may void the 1 year Manufacturer Warranty. Battery replacement services may be available outside the warranty- please contact IDBLUE Support for more information.

This information is also available for download in PDF format on our IDBLUE Documentation page.

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How do I use IDBLUE.HF or IDBLUE.UHF?

We have created a Quickstart reader demonstration video for our customers to see how easy it is to use our devices!

You can also read our IDBLUE User’s Guide on our IDBLUE Documentation page to help familiarize yourself with HF and UHF devices and learn how to use them.

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How long does the IDBLUE RFID reader battery last?

Typical use time for an IDBLUE device is up to 8 to 10 hours but it depends greatly on how the device is being used. You can extend the device operating time by using an external USB portable charger/battery packs available on the market.

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Are IDBLUE devices intrinsically safe?

Our devices are currently going through the certification process for Class I Div 2 (C1D2) certification. If you would like to get notified when certification is complete, please notify IDBLUE Support with your contact information.

For more information regarding ANSI/NFPA areas description classification, check out Electrical Equipment in Hazardous Area Wikipedia article.

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How do I pair your device over Bluetooth?

To pair our devices via Bluetooth:

  • Step 1: Turn on your IDBLUE device.
  • Step 2: Go into your System Bluetooth Settings.
    • Windows: Find the Bluetooth icon located in the system tray in the bottom right side of your desktop. Click on the Bluetooth icon and select “Add a Device” from the context menu.
    • Android/iOS: Under System Settings > Bluetooth, ensure Bluetooth is turned on and tap “Search for Devices” if it doesn’t automatically search.
  • Step 4: Place the IDBLUE device in Discovery Mode by pressing and releasing the power (rear) button. The rear LED should flash blue to indicate discovery mode for 2 minutes.
  • Step 5: The device should show up in the Bluetooth menu.
    • Windows: In the Add a Device window, the new device should show up. Highlight the device ID and click Next.
    • Android/iOS: The new device should show up in the Bluetooth menu. Tap the device name to start pairing.
    • Note: The IDBLUE device ID can be found on the back label, and should be of the format IDBLUE-(U)HF-XXXX.
  • Step 6: Enter the pairing code for the device. The default pairing code is ‘0000’ (Four zeros) – enter this pin code and click Next.
    • Note: For iOS, no pairing code is required.

That’s it! You device should now be properly Bluetooth paired – You are done.

  • If you have a Bluetooth SPP version of our RFID devices, it should load the necessary Bluetooth SPP drivers and when completed, it should be detected in any application using our IDBLUE SDK.
  • If you have a Bluetooth HID version of our RFID devices, it should load the necessary Bluetooth HID drivers and when completed, will enter the tag information in any location you can enter keyboard input.

For detailed information, please refer to our Bluetooth Pairing Guide or the IDBLUE User’s Guide on the IDBLUE Documentation page.

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What is Bluetooth SPP and HID? Which device version do I need?

When connected via Bluetooth, our devices are configured to use one of the following Bluetooth predefined profiles:

  • Serial Port Profile (SPP) – The IDBLUE device is configured using the Bluetooth serial port driver that can send and receive commands using our IDBLUE API. This allows:
    • total UI control and access to all features
    • integration with any 3rd party application
    • ability to read the Tag ID or read/write to the tag’s user memory
    • requires our IDBLUE API to communicate with our device.
  • Human Interface Device Profile (HID) – The IDBLUE device is configured using the Bluetooth HID driver as an input device that can only send specific tag information of the first successful tag scanned as text output when the Action Button is pressed. Because the device is not configurable over Bluetooth and operates similar to a keyboard wedge, it doesn’t need extra development time for integration and works “out of the box” using existing Bluetooth drivers for many host OS’s (including Google Android, Apple iOS,  RIM Blackberry, MS Windows, etc…).  When scanning tags, the device will output:
    • HF tags – the Tag ID.
    • UHF tags – the EPC code from the EPC memory bank.

Available Communication Methods

Bluetooth:

If you need to just scan the Tag ID/EPC  code into an application, we recommend our IDBLUE HID Bluetooth versions of the IDBLUE.HF and IDBLUE.UHF reader without any additional software needed. If you need to integrate more functionality over Bluetooth, we recommend our IDBLUE SPP Bluetooth versions of our IDBLUE.HF or IDBLUE.UHF readers which will require our API via our IDBLUE SDK to control the device.

NOTE: If you want to use our SPP Bluetooth version as a keyboard wedge:

  • Microsoft Windows –  you can download our IDBLUE Keyboard Sender for Windows available on our Device Drivers and Software page.
  • Google Android – you can download our IDBLUE Keyboard Wedge for Google Android on our Device Drivers and Software page.
  • Apple iOS – Due to OS limitations and restrictions, a keyboard wedge for iOS is not available.

USB:

Both types of our devices operate the same when connected over USB via Windows using our IDBLUE USB driver for Windows and have access to the full feature set of our readers.

For more information, you can contact our IDBLUE Sales team to see what device is the best match for your requirements.

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