This is the SparkFun BLE Mate 2, an efficient and reliable Bluetooth 4.0 development board. The BLE Mate 2 closely resembles a breakout board, in that nearly every pin on the on-board BC118 module is made available to access.
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This board is actually a close cousin to our Gold and Silver Bluetooth Mates and functions in a very similar way but, as the name implies, operates as Bluetooth Low Energy instead of Bluetooth 2.0.
The BLE Mate 2 offers a six-pin header on the end opposite the BC118 module which is used as a “host” serial pinout, the same as that on the FTDI Basic boards, which allows the BLE Mate 2 to be connected directly to any device with a matching header, such as the SparkFun Arduino Pro and Pro Mini. Coupled with the FTDI SmartBasic, you can even develop your code without having to swap cables! The board has built-in level translation, so it can be used with boards of higher voltage than the 3.3V default used by the BC118.
Each BLE Mate 2 offers BC118 module that is capable of accepting and transmitting via the UART at 9600bps (default) with a frequency band of 2,402 MHz to 2,480 MHz.
The SparkFun BLE Mate 2 only supports Bluetooth 4.0; it won’t connect to older devices. It’s also worth noting that BLE does not support a Serial Port Protocol as older versions of Bluetooth did; that makes interoperability between BLE dongles, devices, and modules harder than with Bluetooth Classic.