Turn your Mac into a BLE Peripheral Device

This guide will show you how to turn your Mac into a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) peripheral device for creating your very own BLE services and characteristics.


  1. Check if you have node.js installed already
    In Terminal, run this command:
    node --version
  2. Install node.js on your Mac
    Go to the Node.js website
    Download the installer for the latest LTS version (v6.11.2 LTS at the time of writing)
    Follow the installer prompts

  3. Download example files from the bleno github repo Echo example
    It includes two files: main.js & characteristic.js
    Place these 2 files by themselves in a folder somewhere

  4. In Terminal, navigate to the folder containing your main.js and characteristic.js files

  5. Use Node Package Manager (npm) to install bleno in that directory
    Run this command in Terminal:
    npm install bleno
  6. In Terminal, run the main.js script to start advertising your device
    node main.js
  7. Open a BLE app, like LightBlue to view your device, its services and characteristics
    LightBlue for iOS
    LightBlue for MacOS

Any value you write to the Echo Characteristic (UUID: 0xEC0E) on the device should be echoed in the Terminal window

Output in Terminal:

State:  poweredOn
on -> advertisingStart: success
EchoCharacteristic - onUnsubscribe
EchoCharacteristic - onWriteRequest: value = ab
EchoCharacteristic - onReadRequest: value = ab

To quit the node program, press Control + C

For more info, see the bleno github page


 Tom Soderling
Written on August 17, 2017