Bluetooth Vehicle Interface Overview




Introduction

The Bluetooth version of the EcuTek Vehicle Interface (EVI-BT or EVI-BTLE models) allows to establish a wireless connection to a mobile device, such as a smartphone or tablet.

The connection process is different depending on the Vehicle Interface model and device type. Here are the details that are important to understand while troubleshooting connectivity issues.

EVI-BT vs EVI-BTLE

The EVI-BT is based on Bluetooth Classic.
The EVI-BTLE is based on Bluetooth Low Energy.

Other than that, there is no functional difference between the two.

EVI-BTLE requirements

The EVI-BTLE only works with iOS 11 or higher and Android 10 or higher.


How it works

iOS devices (iPhone and iPad)

EVI-BT model

This model behaves as an iOS "accessory". The key point about iOS accessories is that they normally initiate the connection to the iOS device, not vice-versa.

The first time one wants to use the EVI-BT with an iOS device, it needs to be paired. This can be done either from the system Settings > Bluetooth menu or from within the app during the on-boarding procedure that appears the first time the app is run after installing it.

Once the pairing is completed, the connection is established immediately. After that, the devices will remain connected until the link gets interrupted for some reason (ie. device moves out of range, gets powered off or its Bluetooth gets disabled).

When the EVI-BT is not connected, it will switch to a low power mode (sleep, led glowing green every 5 seconds) and will periodically attempt to reconnect to the iOS device.

The EVI-BT will only attempt to reconnect to the latest device it has been connected to. Please see the remarks in the section "Using the Vehicle Interface with multiple devices".

When the EVI-BT is connected to the iOS device, the "My car" button in the ECU Connect app will be enabled. If there is no connection, the button will be disabled.

EVI-BTLE model

With this model the connection is always initiated by the iOS device.

The first time one wants to use the Vehicle Interface, it needs to be paired.
This can be done during the onboarding process that is shown the first time the app is run, or from ECU Connect > Settings > Vehicle Interface Add / Remove.

Once the device is paired, tapping the "My car" button in the ECU Connect app will initiate the connection. The devices will remain connected until the user navigates back to the main menu or the link gets interrupted for some reason (ie. device moves out of range, gets powered off or its Bluetooth gets disabled).

Android devices

When the EVI-BT or EVI-BTLE models are used with Android devices, the connection is always initiated by the Android device.

The first time one wants to use the Vehicle Interface, it needs to be paired.
For EVI-BT, this can be done from the system Settings > Bluetooth menu.
For EVI-BTLE, this can be done during the onboarding process that is shown the first time the app is run, or from ECU Connect > Settings > Vehicle Interface Add / Remove.

Once the device is paired, tapping the "My car" button in the ECU Connect app will initiate the connection. The devices will remain connected until the user navigates back to the main menu or the link gets interrupted for some reason (ie. device moves out of range, gets powered off or its Bluetooth gets disabled).

Remarks

Using the Vehicle Interface with multiple devices

The Vehicle Interface can be used with any number of devices. Only a single device can be connected at the time.

EVI-BT only

If one of the devices is an iPhone/iPad, after the EVI-BT has been connected to a different device, the EVI-BT has to be manually connected from the iOS device Settings > Bluetooth menu. It won't be possible to use the EVI-BT from the ECU Connect app until it gets connected (the "My car" button will be disabled).

Using the Vehicle Interface with other OBD cables

It is not possible to use at the same time the Vehicle Interface and other EcuTek or third party OBD cables/dongles.

In particular, using an OBD Y-splitter cable to connect both the Vehicle Interface and a third-party dongle to the vehicle OBD port, will produce unpredictable results.




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