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We're designing an IoT device that needs to connect to wifi, but the screen is too small for a keyboard. Can wifi credentials be passed via bluetooth to the IoT device from an iPhone or Android?

Would someone please validate this is an available pattern/functionality for IoT devices? I haven't owned enough devices to know or test personally.

I'm looking for general answer.

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  • For iOS devices I believe it’s possible to transfer directly the phone’s WiFi connection details to the new device over BLE, but it requires MFi certification. I thought it was possible without it but I can’t find the details so I was probably mistaken.
    – jcaron
    Apr 17 at 13:34
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Yes, it's a perfectly valid approach that is used by many different IoT devices.

One I've implemented more than once, bur here is an example that uses WebBluetooth so you don't even need a native client on the phone/laptop (but you do need Chrome)

https://www.hardill.me.uk/wordpress/2016/09/13/provisioning-wifi-iot-devices/

https://github.com/hardillb/wifi-provision

p.s. the nodejs code probably needs updating as it uses bleno

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Adding to hardillb's answer... I don't know exactly what device you have, but you could consider the simple workaround of an external keyboard. If your devices have USB / microUSB port, you can get a single keyboard relatively cheap that you can plug in long enough to set up the WiFi connection.

If the devices don't have USB, you could also attempt pairing a blutooth keyboard and applying the same basic mechanism. Again, it's relatively cheap and very simple to implement, especially if you have to do it on multiple devices.

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