Bluetooth 4.0 Ready for Launch

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) have finally announced that Bluetooth 4.0 is ready to roll. The press release indicated that the new spec will be brought to market by the end of this quarter which gives them little over 2 months to get things together. This doesn’t mean devices will be ready by that time though, but that they can start building devices with the standard.

The new Bluetooth 4.0 technology steps right past 3.0 and improves energy efficiency allowing it to be a more desirable option in mobile devices.

“Bluetooth v4.0 throws open the doors to a host of new markets for Bluetooth manufacturers and products such as watches, remote controls, and a variety of medical and in-home sensors. Many of these products run on button-cell batteries that must last for years versus hours and will also benefit from the longer range enabled by this new version of the Bluetooth specification,” said Michael Foley, Ph.D., executive director of the Bluetooth SIG.

SIG describe Bluetooth 4.0 as all three specifications rolled into one in that you get Bluetooth technology along with Bluetooth low energy and Bluetooth high speed transfer all in the one specification. These can be combined or used separately depending on the application of the devices.

For example, sensors like those in pedometers and glucose monitors will run only low energy technology, thus saving power, cost and space within the device. Watches will take advantage of both low energy technology while collecting data from fitness sensors on the body as well as Classic Bluetooth technology when sending that information to a PC, or separately displaying caller ID information when wirelessly connected to a mobile phone. Mobile phones and PCs, which support the widest range of uses, will utilize the full package with Classic, low energy and high speed technology running side by side.

Although SIG do announce that the technology will become available by the end of Q2, they also mention towards the end of the press release that… “Integration of Bluetooth low energy wireless technology within the Bluetooth specification will be completed before June 30, 2010. Upon completion, mobile phone and PC manufacturers may enhance their Bluetooth product offerings with support for Bluetooth low energy wireless technology. End-user devices with Bluetooth v4.0 are expected to reach the market in late 2010 or early 2011.”

Via: Engadget

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