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Beacon Service Demo App (iOS)

This is the demo application for the Google Proximity Beacon APIs for iOS. It also includes a sample Eddystone scanner, which it uses to find beacons on live devices.

Building The Sample

Setting up this sample is mostly about getting set up with the various Google APIs, their authentication keys, and OAuth stuff. The actual app itself is CocoaPod based and quite easy to get running.


  1. Make sure your computer has CocoaPods installed,, as well as Xcode 6 (We've had reports that Xcode 7 betas might be problematic at this point.)

  2. To get all the component pieces.

     cd ~/the/folder/that/has/"Podfile"/in/it
     pod install
     open BeaconServiceDemoApp.xcworkspace/

    Don't try to build or run yet — it won't compile. We need to add a couple of .plist files first.

    (Do NOT open the .xcodeproj/, only use the .xcworkspace/ !!)

  3. Go to Google API Cloud Developer Console thingie, Note that these instructions assume you're still using the Developers Console without the material design ≣ at the top left. If you're on the newer console, things will be in slightly different places -- use the ≣ menu to go to "API Manager" and look for the Overview page (adding APIs) or Credentials page (for managing credentials). We'll update these instructions as soon as the new console comes out of beta.

  4. Create a new project (via the dropdown at the top). Enable the following APIs (on the left side, click 'APIs & auth', then 'APIs'):

    • Google Proximity Beacon API (not Proximity Pairing).
      • note that you have to search for this API; it's not included in the default selection list
    • Google Maps SDK for iOS.
    • Google Places API for iOS.
  5. On the left of the Developers Console, click on "APIs & auth", and then on "Credentials". Press the "Add Credentials" button, then "API key" to create a Public API access key.

    1. Choose 'iOS Key'.
    2. In the box where you specify acceptable bundle IDs, you can choose to either specify, or just leave it blank (note, that for shipping apps, leaving it blank isn't a great idea).
    3. Click "Create".
    4. Copy BeaconServiceDemoApp/APIKey.plist.sample to BeaconServiceDemoApp/APIKey.plist and replace ENTER YOUR API KEY HERE with this newly generated API key.
    5. This API key will now always be available on the running AppDelegate as googleAPIKey.
  6. Go to from a browser logged in to the account that created the API project you just created.

  7. Go to the button "Get a configuration file" and click that.

  8. For "App Name", Enter / select the project name you just created in API console.

  9. For iOS BundleID, enter IF YOU DO NOT ENTER EXACTLY THIS IT WILL NOT WORK, it's case sensitive.

  10. "Continue to Choose and Configure Services".

  11. Enable Google SignIn (that's all).

  12. "Continue to Generate configuration Files".

  13. Download the configuration file, GoogleService-Info.plist. Put it in the same folder as your Info.plist and APIKey.plist files. Make sure any other GoogleService-Info.plist files are deleted.

  14. You now have to set your project's reversed client ID in Xcode:

    1. Click on the blue project "BeaconServiceDemoApp" at the top of the Project Navigator.
    2. Click on "BeaconServiceDemoApp" under "Targets" in the main part of Xcode.
    3. Click on "Info" across the top.
    4. Look for the scheme under "URL Types" that looks like: com.googleusercontent.apps.234235235-fjboi3289ab89j4g89adsjfoasidfjs
    5. Replace that scheme with the value of the REVERSED_CLIENT_ID from the GoogleService-Info.plist file (i.e. com.googleusercontent.apps.2384234-35892859asdfashdoaiusdasf)
  15. XCode 7 users only: Cocoa has a new security model for URLs within your application, so we have to add some lines to the Info.plist file to make sure that Google SignIn can open the URLs it needs to. You need to add the following to your Info.plist:

        <string>YOUR REVERSE CLIENT ID (com.googlusercontent.BLAH)</string>
  16. (Optional, but very cool). One of the best ways to make sure that everything is running properly is to run this app in the simulator. Since the simulator doesn't support Bluetooth scanning, we can, instead, have the app "see" some fake Eddystone devices when you click "Scan". To do this, you should run the following in your root BeaconServiceDemoApp folder:

    # php gen_fake_beacons.php

    Now when you build and run the simulator, there will be 10 beacons that you can play around with registering, activating, deactivating, etc, and be able to verify that everything is working properly before actually modifying real-world beacon hardware.

    Give it a whirl! Generate the fake beacons, build and run in the simulator.

  17. If you see a linker error: library not found for -lPods`, You'll have to do the following:

    1. Click on BeaconServiceDemoApp in the Project Explorer.
    2. Click on the BeaconServiceDemoApp target in the projects and targets list.
    3. Click on Build Phases Across the top.
    4. Expand "Link binary with Libraries".
    5. Remove libPods.a by clicking on the button below.

    Your app should link fine now. This appears to be some goofiness with CocoaPods. Hopefully it will get addressed soon.

Phew, we're done!