Categories: BroadbandM2MNetworks

Bluetooth Gets Speed And Range Upgrade In IoT Push

Bluetooth will become faster, have a longer range and support Mesh networking from next year as the technology seeks to become an essential component of the Internet of Things (IoT).

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has offered a preview of its 2016 technology roadmap, promsing that speeds will be increased by 100 percent without a rise in power consumption, while the range will be extended by four times.

Additionally, Mesh networking will allow Bluetooth devices to connect together to cover an entire building or home. This, the SIG says, will allow Bluetooth to support smart home and infrastructure applications as well as mission critical processes that require fast speeds and low latency.

Bluetooth upgrade

“There is significant demand from our members and the industry at large to enhance Bluetooth with the new capabilities we’re announcing today,” said Toby Nixon, chairman of the Bluetooth SIG Board of Directors. “Current projections put the market potential for IoT between $2 and $11.1 trillion by 2025. The technical updates planned for Bluetooth technology in 2016 will help make these expectations a reality and accelerate growth in IoT.”

Bluetooth is one of a number of technologies used to power IoT sensors and applications, with others such as Wi-Fi, SIGFOX and cellular networks also used.

Recent versions of the technology, which is the global short-range wireless standard for personal connectivity, have worked to reduce its power consumption as the IoT continues to gather pace. This was particularly evident with Bluetooth 4.0 which merged the ‘classic’ version of Bluetooth with Bluetooth Smart, or Bluetooth Low Energy, which uses considerably less power but is not compatible with previous versions.

Most modern operating systems support Bluetooth Smart natively and The Bluetooth SIG claims that 90 percent of all Bluetooth-enabled devices will be compatible with Bluetooth Smart by 2018.

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Steve McCaskill

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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