Okay. Basically I want the android app to be able to recognize that a coin was inserted into the coin collector before it allows the user to use certain functions of the app.

However I am unsure what would be the best way to pass the data from the coin collector to the Android app. My currently train of thought is to have the coin collector connect to an Arduino board which would then connect to the android app and send the input through that connection.

I was wondering if anyone knows of a better way to achieve this, or whether this is an acceptable/standard solution.

Thank you in advance!

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    This is unanswerable without details of the Android hardware and security model on which the app will run. – Chris Stratton Oct 13 '16 at 8:04
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    The interface to the coin collector highly depends on the coin collector you use! The interface to the Android app highly depends on the Arduino environment you use; Bluetooth would be a reasonable approach. BTW, to me the idea of using high end electronics which requires old-fashioned coins to work sounds a little bit odd ;-) – mic Oct 13 '16 at 8:57

Here are a couple of opitions for you:

1- Bluetooth - if in close range, an HC-05 will work great.

2- Wifi - wifi can work good. It is a little more complex then bluetooth but its range can get further. For example, a Tweet can be sent each time a coin is detected.

3- GSM - it is pretty much texting. You can make it so the coin collector texts you or someone there is a coin.

All of these solutions work great with the MIT app creator. It makes the data you receive much easier to process.


My take: use a nodeMCU (an ESP8266 based board) instead of Arduino.

nodeMCU have WiFi and you can run a minimal WebServer on it, so your Android app can communicate using simple HTTP GET commands. Using Bluetooth is not as convenient.

That's means the Android programming part will be easy and you can extend your solution to other platforms (iPhone).

And you only need a browser to develop and test the Android-Web Server interface on nodeMCU

Maybe you can even run your entire app in the nodeMCU, and use only a browser to interact with the coin collector.

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