Bluetooth Smart / BLE Scanning on OSX + Xcode 6

Starting to play around with BLE development with Intel Edison, here are some useful tools for scanning and discovering local BLE services for developers.

I am using an older MacBook Pro and I frequently encountered problems connecting to and reading BLE characteristics. Of the below options, I have had the best success using the LightBlue iOS app (NOT the OS X app). I suspect I might get different results if I tried these scanners with my newer Mac Air.

First, there is Xcode’s Bluetooth tools. You can get them by opening Xcode and selecting “Xcode -> Open Developer Tools -> More Tools” and then downloading the “Hardware IO” libraries after logging in with your developer credentials.


Copy these “.app” files into “ -> contents -> applications” to have them show up in the “Open Developer Tools” menu. You will have to restart Xcode after dragging + dropping those apps in there. Note:  To open the Xcode package, Command + click the file and select “Show Package Contents.”

Now open the “Bluetooth Explorer” which will now be located in the Open Developer Tools menu:

bluetooth explorer
Next, select “Devices -> Low Energy Devices.” With this utility, you can scan for nearby devices:


The other useful utilities are here: