Bluetooth Low Energy Range with printed PCB Antenna and +5 dBm
The question about the range of Bluetooth Low Energy will be detailed in another post, but the actual range in outdoor scenarios is about 25-50 (80 – 160 ft) meters, indoor scenarios with several dry walls in between range at about 17-18 meters (55-60 ft). If there are brick-walls or even reinforced concrete, we usually get a range of about 12-14 meters (40 – 45 ft).
How do we increase the range?
There are two basic options, the first is the Range Extension Feature of Bluetooth Low Energy Version 5.0. The other possible option is to use an amplifier.
Range Extension Feature of Bluetooth Low Energy 5.0
Range extension works by using more symbols to represent each bit that is being transferred. That increases sensitivity. This resulted in a range of 1.5 km line of sight with a printed PCB Antenna and +5 dBm. See the video from texas instruments below:
Range Extension by amplifying the signal
For the CC2640R2F, there is the possibility of integrating it with the CC2591 or the CC2592. This adds 22 dBm of Tx power, or in other words, creates a range of about 3.5 km line of sight, see video below.