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Friday, June 09, 2006

Bluetooth 3.0 - The Next-Generation

I use Bluetooth every day to connect my headset to my phone and transfer files. Its a great technology and my only complaint about it is how slow it is (around 721 Kbps). A much faster version (thankfully) termed Bluetooth 3.0 is poised to solve the slow transfer speed by boosting it to around 480Mbps, a major increase. The increased will not only help file transfer but will be able to support high definition video conferencing. The additional speed is gained from ultra wideband technology (UWB).

But Bluetooth has always been a short range transfer technology and other technologies exist to transfer data at the same speed over further distances. So the question is, what is the need for Bluetooth at all? Competitors such as Wireless USB will give Bluetooth a run for its money since works over longer distances (greater than 30 feet).

When will we see Bluetooth 3.0? The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has been working with numerous developers to include the next-generation Bluetooth technology into products that will hit the market as early as 2007.

The real determining factor among the numerous transfer protocols that have been proposed is which ones get incorporated into more devices. Ultimately the stratified market of protocols should be simplified into one or two top contenders, we'll just have to wait and see who they are.


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