9 Replies Latest reply: Aug 4, 2012 11:12 AM by transco
transco Level 1 (10 points)

I have lost my Bluetooth headset somewhere in my home office.  Silly I know, but with wall-to-wall stuff (wiring, books, equipment, and just plain junk), it has simply disappeared.  It is a 'Plantronics Voyager Pro +' and is still operating.  I narrowed down the search to my office, by noting how long it took to 'Connect' to the headset with my iPhone 4.  My question is... has anyone seem an iOS or OS X app for measuring Bluetooth signal strength?  Pleanty available for WiFi, but I can't find one for Bluetooth.  With such software I might be able to zero in on the lost headset.

iPhone 4, iOS 4.3.3
  • transco Level 1 (10 points)

    Found it! There is an OS X app in the developer tools called 'Bluetooth Explorer' that will do the job.  Better would be an iOS app so I could use my iPhone, but it will do for now.

  • X423424X Level 6 (14,215 points)

    Bluetooth Explorer is part of the developer tools set (XCode) located in /Developer/Applications/Utilities.  The sig strength display is accessed in Bluetooth Explorer's Devices Menu, Connection Quality Monitor menu item. Click start and it will show the sig strenghts for the connected BT devices (look at the RSSI display).  But I don't know how that's going to help you find your missing device   (ok, I suppose you could move the machine around looking for the max strength)

  • transco Level 1 (10 points)

    That's exactly what I hoped to do using a laptop.  Unfortunately no-go.  The headset doesn't show on the laptop when doing a device search.  The iPhone was previously linked to the headset, but never to the laptop.  Apparently the headset isn't 'discoverable' in its current state.  Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time.

  • X423424X Level 6 (14,215 points)

    If the laptop was not the original machine it was paired with you need to unpair it from that original machine and then re-pair with your laptop to see it. (or is it just to pair with it?).

  • transco Level 1 (10 points)

    Well I seemed to have messed that up!  I unpaired it from the iPhone, now have no visibility on any device.  By that I mean, now the iPhone no longer 'sees'  the headset when browsing devices, ditto for the laptop.  Of course I have no way of power cycling the headset, so can't get it back into a 'discoverable' mode.

  • transco Level 1 (10 points)

    Success at last!   I discovered my iPad was also paired with the headset so I thought I'd give that a try, using the 'time to connect' approach for estimating relative signal strength.  Turns out the iPad's Bluetooth yielded much more definitive results.  Connect time was a fraction of a second when I was within a few inches of the headset.  A couple of feet away and it increased to approximately two seconds.  The difference was enough to pinpoint the headset in a few minutes.  It turns out the headset was sandwiched between a large plugstrip and the wall.  I would have never found it without my improvised field strength meter.

  • jonny 2.5 Level 1 (10 points)

    I know your post is a bit old, but I had the same problem but the "time to connect" did not work for me. So I thought I would share with other people how I found the bluetooth headset that I lost in my appartment. It was quite a simple solution but it involved calling someone and getting their help. I called my friend and told her to put in earbuds or something so that she can hear me and text and the same time. I went around my whole appartment banging on a pot while I had the headset switched on. I had her text me as she heard it getting louder. Finally I got to the point where I knew I was near it and she said she could hear me talking so I simply started to talk to her as she responed via text. It was only a few minutes later that I was able to find it. For some weird reason, it was at the bottom of a bag of towels I keep under my sink for spills. I have a guess as to how it got there but it would have taken forever. Anyways, for those who have this same problem in the future, this is the best way to do it without having an app or computer trying to find the signal strength.

  • jtdaly Level 1 (5 points)

    Jonny, you had the best solution, by far. I too had the same problem, also with a Plantronics Pro + (what is it about these things???).


    I didn't even need to do the texting thing... had my wife sit in the bathroom with the cordless house phone (yes, old school, still have a landline) and call my cell phone which was still pairing with the headset. I set the cell phone down, and walked around describing where I was. One thing helped a bit.. at least with the plantronics, when you get far away from the headset the signal starts crackling. That helped me narrow the search to which floor the headset was on, I periodically moved the cell phone so she didn't hear crackling with the dead air.  So, kept walking around and eventually ended up pulling pants on hangers out of the closet and found it in a pocket! When you get close, if the caller can talk loudly, you can sometimes faintly hear the earpiece on the headset too. Great idea. Try this one.

  • transco Level 1 (10 points)

    Wow! A most ingenious solution.  This and jtdaly's method of judging the proximity of the headset to the iPhone are both helpful and obviously things I didn't think of. 


    As a side note, my love affair with my Plantronics Pro + is growing a bit thin.  I used to use the same headset with both my iPhone and iPad (phone-2 connected).  Now, it will link with the iPad for a few seconds, then drop it, even though the proximity hasn't changed.  Either that, or it will dump phone-1, in favor of phone-2.  A third scenario is the iPhone will lock on to the Pro +, but not use it.  This happens often when I'm listening to Podcasts.  All this may be typical Bluetooth behavior, but I only mention it because  the is all relatively new.