This blog shows you a (detailed) analysis, symptoms and 4 temporary workarounds for the Samsung/Dexcom G6 bluetooth connection problems. Many users are experiencing problems after installation of the Samsung November 1, 2020 software update. Translated automatically to your language here.
First the disclaimer
I am not a healthcare professional. Always consult your doctor before making changes to your diabetes treatment plan. For this blog series, I do not have – and do not want – any sponsorship deals or whatsoever and pay for all equipment just like anybody else.
Table of contents
The blog-specific parts:
- High level user impact
- Detailed user impact
- 4 Temporary workarounds
- Prevent this from happening
- Technical details of our setup
- Permanent fix
- Useful links
And the general parts:
Dexcom G6 bluetooth connection problem after Samsung update of Nov 1, 2020. Message “Pair with Dexcom” appears every 4-5 minutes which prevents BG value from being processed automatically.
After an update of our Samsung S10e phone, xDrip + no longer automatically retrieves any data from the Dexcom G6 bluetooth sensor. Suddenly, the message “Pair with DexcomK2?” appears every four or five minutes. I understand K2 is the last part of our sensor serial number. General message for all of us should be something like “Pair with Dexcom” supplemented with the last two characters of your sensor serial number. Window title of the pop-up is “Bluetooth pairing request“.
High level user impact
Too much user input needed to function AndroidAPS as a closed loop system.
Detailed user impact
Normally xDrip+ retrieves BG-readings every 5 minutes for which the process is fully automated. After receiving the BG-readings they are sent to AndroidAPS for calculation and/or Nightscout database for storage. After the Samsung update for each BG-reading user input is needed: when tapping [OK], xDrip + will retrieve the BG values from the Dexcom G6 ‘as normal’. For users it is too intensive to tap [OK] every few minutes. Please mind the security mechanism build into AndroidAPS: when not received frequent BG-readings from xDrip+, AndroidAPS will fall back on insulin pump basal settings. The recent behaviour undermines the safe feeling that exists when using the AndroidAPS solution.
4 Temporary workarounds
- Switch AndroidAPS to open loop and wait for the community to publish an update of xDrip+ and/or wait for a next Samsung update.
- Use an old phone
Choose to perform a factory reset on an old phone which can support AndroidAPS and xDrip+. The software can work without a SIM-card and connects using Wi-Fi. Log in on old phone, restore Wi-Fi connection, install AndroidAPS and xDrip+, make backups for both apps on your current phone, put current phone in flight mode, restore backups on old phone to see your solution running, make sure pump connection and xDrip+ alerts are working as expected, perform a test bolus to make sure this temporary solution is working. After a perfect test remove xDrip+ and AndroidAPS from your new phone to prevent them from interfering the setup on your old phone and afterwards disable flight mode. It isn’t safe to use old hardware but hey, at least you have a closed loop system again. Because phone software is out-of-date only use your old phone as closed loop system.
- Use you’re current phone
Make a full backup of your current phone and all apps like WhatsApp and files, pay extra attention to both backups of AndroidAPS and xDrip+ (and place them on your SD-card or in the cloud like Dropbox or Google Drive). After you secured all backups perform a factory reset and install all apps. Don’t update your phone software with the new Samsung 1-nov-2020 update till you know there’s a solution for the bluetooth problems. When all apps and Wi-Fi are working again ‘as normal’ install AndroidAPS and xDrip+, restore backups to see your solution running, make sure pump connection and xDrip+ alerts are working as expected, perform a test bolus to make sure this temporary solution is working. Because this solution isn’t secure I recommend option 1 or option 2. But hey, at least you have a closed loop system again. Devil’s dilemma.
- Ofcourse you can always fall back in time: disable AndroidAPS and/or xDrip+, find the user manual and remote control of your current insulin pump and use the old-fashion – supported – solution.
- Read the entire pull call on Github. The community – and xDrip developers – are communicating within this GitHub pull request. Perhaps there will be a workaround which isn’t described in this blog. I suggest to read it.
Prevent this from happening
Did you already perform the Samsung software update of Nov 1, 2020? If not my suggestion would be to postphone until there’s a solution for the Bluetooth connection. I exepect a solution will be shared in the xDrip Facebook group. In order to postphone you need to make a decision if you prefer the use of AndroidAPS above the security of the phone software. Perhaps is a difficult choice. I suggest this possibility because there isn’t a easy way to revert the software update, and when you do you’ll use an even older software version of the one you are using right now. Devil’s dilemma.
Technical details of our setup
- Samsung Galaxy S10e
- Sensor Dexcom G6 starts with 8H
- Most recent versions of:
- AndroidAPS (2.7.0)
- Nightscout (14.0.6)
- xDrip+ (2020.10.01)
- Samsung phone software (updated to security level of 1-nov-2020)
I expect someone of the community to post a solution in this xDrip Facebook group. You can contribute in this GitHub project and especially in this GitHub pull request, thanks!
Most of these links are large member-only Facebook group. It’s easy to ask for membership, most of the time the administrators will grant you access very quick.
Please remember. It’s a Do-It-Yourself project, not Do-It-Alone. When you need help more of the community – or you want to contribute – please visit this section.
Purpose of this series
The idea of the diabetic patient as a crisis manager is outdated. Using a ‘Do It Yourself Artificial Pancreas System’ (DIY APS) you have less to worry about and can achieve a higher quality of life for yourself and your caregivers. When configured properly, the diabetic person may have a healthy HBA1C value. You can start today!
Our blog series is called ‘our journey: from pen therapy to AndroidAPS, a DIY APS’. This T1D series aims to inform the world on current technical possibilities to bring down the effort on (daily) diabetes management activities and be healthier long term.
Follow this blog series to see how you can make a step-by-step shift from pen therapy to a ‘Do It Yourself Artificial Pancreas System’ (DIY APS). A similar project for Apple smartphones is called Loop project. Welcome to the future.
Need some help?
All DIY APS possibilities are developed by the diabetes community since 2013. Most effort in the online DIY APS community is done by volunteers through a pay-it-forward mechanism. Each participant/volunteer has severe perseverance and the will to contribute to the community in their own field of knowledge. Please feel free to contact me on whatever question you may have and request a membership in Facebook groups AndroidAPSUsers / TheLoopedGroup / xDrip. Happy to help!
About the author
I am Peter, a millennial born in 1984, living in The Netherlands and hope someone will find a cure for type 1 diabetes (T1D) fast. Since my girlfriend was diagnosed as T1D both of our lives rapidly have changed. I became involved as a volunteer on the AndroidAPS project. I commit my IT Service Delivery Management passion to a more comfortable and healthier diabetes-life because of all automation possible since 2013. As a professional, I feel comfortable to deliver value, overseeing all components while managing staff and costs.
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