Eddystone is an open beacon format developed by Google and designed with transparency and robustness in mind. Eddystone can be detected by both Android and iOS devices. The Eddystone format builds on lessons learned from working with industry partners in existing deployments, as well as the wider beacon community. Several different types of payload can be included in the frame format, including:
- Eddystone-UID: A unique, static ID with a 10-byte Namespace component and a 6-byte Instance component.
- Eddystone-URL: A compressed URL that, once parsed and decompressed, is directly usable by the client.
- Eddystone-TLM: Beacon status data that is useful for beacon fleet maintenance, and powers Google Proximity Beacon API's diagnostics endpoint. -TLM should be interleaved with an identifying frame such as Eddystone-UID or Eddystone-EID (for which the encrypted eTLM version preserves security).
- Eddystone-EID: A time-varying beacon frame that can be resolved to a stable identifier by a linked resolver, such as Proximity Beacon API.
Additionally, Eddystone includes a configuration service and branding materials. To ensure that your deployment fully supports the Google beacon platform, you should set up your beacons with Eddystone-UID or -EID, and optionally add -URL and -TLM.
The Eddystone specification and associated resources are hosted on GitHub.
Setting up a beacon with Eddystone
Beacons that meet the full Eddystone specification can be provisioned to broadcast using any tool that implements the Eddystone Generic Attribute Profile (GATT) service. The Google Beacon Tools app for Android and iOS can be used to provision a beacon, as well as to attach content to the beacon that can be exposed through your apps.
Many beacons support both the Eddystone universal configuration service as well as proprietary services specific to individual beacon manufacturers. For a simple getting started experience, choose a manufacturer that supports the Eddystone GATT service. Proprietary services may offer extra functionality targeted at specialized beacon hardware.
Many beacons can be provisioned with several different frame types interleaved. In almost all cases, developers should choose one of the identifying frames (Eddystone-UID, Eddystone-EID) to ensure future compatibility with future Google products, augmented by other frames used for particular purposes (Eddystone-TLM for diagnostics, Eddystone-URL for Physical Web).
Beacons can be powered by a battery which can last for over a year. Beacons can also use an external power source, for example if the beacon is built into a larger device such as a TV or a vehicle. The beacon's battery life is influenced by the rate at which the beacon transmits its message, and the power level of the transmissions. These parameters also influence detection latency (the delay between the user's device being near the beacon and the successful parsing of the beacon broadcast by the device). Your beacon manufacturer can provide you with details of how various configurations affect the battery life of the beacons they sell.
Certified beacon partners
The Google beacon platform is designed to enable an extensible, broad range of functionality related to proximity and location. Often venue owners and developers will wish to work with specialist providers to enable this functionality for their venue's visitors.
Google works with providers from across the beacon industry to encourage interoperability across the Google beacon platform on Android, iOS and the Google Cloud Platform.
We have identified two categories of providers that can help you with your beacon installation, setup and maintenance. Location Services Providers offer a range of services that can get your installation fully up and running. Beacon Manufacturers offer beacon hardware that forms the foundation of location- and proximity-related functionality.
Providers on this page have passed a suite of checks that we have designed to help ensure compatibility with the Google beacon platform, including beacons that can be set up to broadcast Eddystone, as well as services that use the Google beacon platform for app, web, and infrastructure related functionality.
When you choose a beacon provider, you can help ensure that your beacon installation gives the best flexibility for the future by asking about:
- Support for the full Eddystone specification.
- Use of the Nearby Messages API in Android.
- Whether they are set up to accept your permission to manage beacons in your Google Cloud Project.
You should verify that your provider is able to configure beacons and associated services to deliver the functionality you want, including integration with Google products. Google does not endorse particular projects or business approaches from providers, but rather checks the capability of the provider to use the Google beacon platform effectively.
Location services providers
The providers listed here offer location software and services that have been verified by Google engineers to be compatible with the Google beacon platform. This includes sourcing of Eddystone enabled beacons, and integration of the providers' tools with the Google beacon platform.
Eddystone is developed in the open with the input and collaboration of a number of beacon manufacturers, with an emphasis on interoperability and long-term robustness that avoids dependency on any particular party. Beacons that support Eddystone can be provisioned using Eddystone-compatible tools from any manufacturer, and can be registered with any Eddystone-compatible service.
Full support for Eddystone
The following manufacturers provide beacons with full support for Eddystone, including:
- The core Eddystone frames: -UID, -TLM, -URL.
- Eddystone Ephemeral ID (EID).
- The Eddystone GATT service, for easy configuration.
Eddystone beacons from these manufacturers will work well with all Google products that support beacons.
Support for the Eddystone format
This table shows all manufacturers whose beacons have been checked by Google, and the features that they support:
(-UID, -URL, -TLM)
|Ephemeral ID support
|Ruuvi Open-Source Innovations|
|Glue & Blue|
Perform validation checks
Google no longer validates beacons for manufacturers directly, however you can still carry out your own validation checks using the Eddystone Validator. Note that your own use of this tool does not constitute any kind of certification by Google.