Ultra-low-power Bluetooth: the new wireless frontier

A new flavor of Bluetooth might be just the answer.

At the same time the SIG was focusing on unification of wireless technologies, engineers at Nokia were developing a complementary radio technology called Wibree that uses a small fraction of the power consumed by the Bluetooth radio. Wibree shares many similarities with the Bluetooth radio and is easily made compatible with Bluetooth radio chips.

In June 2007, the Bluetooth SIG announced it would bring Nokia's Wibree under the Bluetooth umbrella to create an ultra-low-power version of Bluetooth wireless technology. The result: a wireless technology with the same low power consumption and tremendous battery life as ZigBee, but able to communicate with the hundreds of millions of Bluetooth devices shipping each year.

Development of ultra-low-power Bluetooth technology is currently under way, and the Bluetooth SIG expects to announce the first version of the specification in early 2008 with chip shipments following closely behind. Consumers should be able to purchase the first ultra-low-power Bluetooth-enabled products by fall 2008.

In addition to creating a vast market for sensors, watches and other existing devices, ultra-low-power Bluetooth's ability to connect low-power devices to the mobile phone will open new applications. The mobile phone, after all, is quickly becoming the computing hub of the future, combining entertainment, connectivity and data storage in a single device.

With ultra-low-power Bluetooth, for example, it will be possible for mobile phones to support location-based services, allowing users to download schedules from bus stops, product information from a store aisle, or airline schedules from the airport gate.

In the home, the mobile phone could serve as a remote control for the TV, thermostat and even household appliances, or simply direct a smart home to power up or down according to the presence of occupants.

The demand for embedded wireless technology capable of long-lasting, power-independent functionality has existed for some time. Ultra-low-power Bluetooth technology promises a new answer, one with a proven global standard at its heart.

Foley is executive director of the Bluetooth SIG. For more information visit Bluetooth.com or Mike's blog.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Michael Foley

Network World
Show Comments

Essentials

Microsoft L5V-00027 Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Desktop

Learn more >

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive

Learn more >

Mobile

Lexar® JumpDrive® S45 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Exec

Lexar® JumpDrive® C20c USB Type-C flash drive 

Learn more >

HD Pan/Tilt Wi-Fi Camera with Night Vision NC450

Learn more >

Lexar® Professional 1800x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards 

Learn more >

Audio-Technica ATH-ANC70 Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Aysha Strobbe

Windows 10 / HP Spectre

Ultimately, I think the Windows 10 environment is excellent for me as it caters for so many different uses. The inclusion of the Xbox app is also great for when you need some downtime too!

Mark Escubio

Windows 10 / Lenovo Yoga

For me, the Xbox Play Anywhere is a great new feature as it allows you to play your current Xbox games with higher resolutions and better graphics without forking out extra cash for another copy. Although available titles are still scarce, but I’m sure it will grow in time.

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?