Setup and Configuration
If your beacons have been sent to you by the Norbit team, it has already been configured and set up for you and so you can ignore this section of the article. The Norbit team should have also created an Estimote account for you.
Estimote Account and App
To setup your beacons yourself, please first create an Estimote Cloud Account here. Please ensure you use the same email to create the account that you used to order the beacons from Estimote. This ensures the beacons are setup to be used with your account.
Once you have done this, please download the Estimote app for your smartphone and log in to the account you created. This app enables you to setup and manage your beacons with ease. The Estimote app can be installed for iOS and Android devices via the links below
Apple app store: https://apps.apple.com/us/app/estimote/id686915066
With the app installed and logged in, you are now ready to configure each of your beacons to ready them for installation.
There are a variety of Estimote beacon settings that affect both the performance and lifespan of the beacon. The list below provides details of key settings that are relevant in the context of the Norbit app and how they should be configured. Settings not listed below should not be tampered with or modified from the default configuration.
To access these settings in the Estimote app, ensure Bluetooth is turned on and place one of your beacons next to your phone. After that, please go to the beacon list view, wait for your beacon to appear and tap on the beacon to connect to it. Once connected, the settings below should be loaded as a list. You can configure them one at time by tapping on them in the list.
Note: If after tapping on a beacon, it says that you don't own the beacon, please contact Estimote to have that beacon transferred to your Estimote Cloud account. This should not be an issue if you used the same email to sign up to Estimote Cloud as you used to order the beacons.
- Beacon Name: The name of the beacon could be anything you want to call it and its sole purpose is for your own reference. When installing beacons, it is a good idea to name them based on their location. This makes easy to find the beacon with the Estimote app after it has been installed.
- Major and Minor ID: The Major and Minor ID are two unique numbers up to 6 digits long each. The combination of these two numbers is how a beacon is identified in the system. In a similar sense, a car is identified by its registration number as the beacons are identified by their major and minor ID. The major and minor ID are information needed to identify a beacon due to a fault or add the beacon into the Norbit app admin panel (the admin panel will ask for both the major and minor ID of the beacon). You do not have change this setting, simply take note of it.
- Advertising Interval: The advertising interval of a beacon tells us how often the beacon is broadcasting its signal. The measurement unit for this setting is milliseconds (ms) and it can range from 100 ms to 2000 ms. The more a beacon broadcasts its signal, the more battery it uses and hence this setting will directly affect the battery life of your beacons. This setting is important because there is no guarantee that the customer’s phone will pick up a beacon signal the first time it is broadcasted and if this happens, your customer may walk past a beacon without being detected. For this reason, the lower the advertising interval, the higher the chances customers will detect it. The recommended advertising interval to provide the right balance between battery life and app responsiveness is 200ms. Please note that it’s not possible to guarantee that customers will detect beacons as beacon detection is dependant on a variety of environment factors and the customer's phone.
- Transmit Power: This setting controls the strength of the beacon signal. The higher the transmit power, the further the beacon strength will be detectable. The strength is measured in terms of the distance the signal can be picked up from in meters and can be adjusted from 1 metre to 200 metres. The stronger the beacon transmits its signal, the more battery it will use and hence this setting will directly affect the battery life of your beacons. The recommended advertising interval is 15 metres. However, it is important to adjust this based on where you decide to install them. The best way to test whether the power is appropriate is to stand at the signal boundary where you believe your customer should first pick up the beacon signal and use the Estimote app to check if you can consistently pick up the signal. The app will provide an approximate distance between the beacon and the phone and you can use this as a guide for the signal strength.
Adding Beacons to the Norbit Admin Panel
Once you have configured each of your beacons, you are now ready to add it to the Norbit admin panel. Adding beacons to the admin panel is a simple process. Under the 'Settings' or 'Integrations' section of the admin panel, there will be a tab for beacons. Click on this tab and click on the 'Add Beacon' button. Here you will be asked to supply the beacon name and major and minor ID for each of your beacon. Once the information is added and saved, your beacon is ready to be installed and used.
Placement and Installation
Finding a good location
Generally, beacons should be installed where they are visible and their signal is not obstructed. Ceilings are generally the best place to install them, however, if this is not possible, beacons can be installed on walls (provided that it is out of reach of centre visitors).
Surfaces with the following conditions should be avoided:
- dusty surfaces (it is a good idea to wipe the surface and drying it before installation)
- wet/humid surfaces and environment
- hot surfaces or surfaces exposed to direct sunlight
- surfaces around air vents / alarms / light fittings or any other equipment installed
- surfaces above coffee machines or any other equipment that generates smoke/moisture/heat
Installing the beacon
Prior to conducting the installation please inspect the location to ensure it is appropriate based on the tips above. To install the beacon, follow the steps below:
- Remove the double sided tape cover
- Carefully place the beacon on the surface
- Firmly hold the beacon to the surface for at least 5 seconds to ensure it is firmly stuck
- Take notes of the beacon ID with the location to make sure you can find the beacon again in the future
Please note that you can freely reposition the beacon in the first 45 minutes of placement. After 45 minutes, the adhesive will stick permanently.
To ensure your beacon remains functional at all times and performs at the level you expect, it is important to maintain them appropriately. Since beacons generally do not have any Internet connectivity, maintenance requires you to visit each beacon with the Estimote app on your phone. Please note that this does not apply if your beacon supports Internet connectivity. If this is the case, it may be possible to run maintenance on them remotely. We recommend you conduct the following checks every 3 months:
Battery checks are important to ensure your beacon is still functional and if necessary, to organise a replacement. The beacon's battery can be checked via the Estimote app.
Firmware Update Check
Firmware is software that is installed on the beacon. Estimote frequently releases updates to this software to improve the beacons functionality, settings, performance and efficiency. It is crucial that you ensure the firmware on your beacons are updated to the latest version at all times. The Estimote app will indicate if there are updates available for your beacon when it is connected to it.
Physical inspections are basic visual checks to ensure the beacon remains in the correct position. Depending on the conditions, even though unlikely, beacons may fall from walls or ceilings or be unintentionally removed (e.g. by cleaners).