Monday, August 10, 2009

Fast Facts - Bluetooth Technology 101

What is Bluetooth technology?
Bluetooth wireless technology is built into electronic gadgets and lets you talk and share information like voice, music, and videos wirelessly.
Radio waves send you information:
Mobile phones, FM radio, and television all use different kinds of radio waves to send information—such as, music, and videos—wirelessly.
Your PAN
Bluetooth technology also uses radio waves. The biggest difference between Bluetooth technology and devices like FM radios and TV is distance. Radios and TVs are meant to broadcast to many people over miles or kilometers.
Bluetooth technology sends information within your own personal space, which is called your Personal Area Network or “PAN” at distances up to 10 meters (33 feet).
Bluetooth Radio
When someone says a product "has Bluetooth,” that means it has a piece of “hardware,” or a small computer chip that contains the Bluetooth radio, and some software that lets you, the user, connect that product to other products wirelessly using Bluetooth technology.
The kind of radio technology used by Bluetooth technology dates back to discoveries pioneered by the military in the 1940s.
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group
Bluetooth technology was invented in 1994 by engineers at Ericsson, a Swedish company. In 1998, a group of companies agreed to work together using Bluetooth technology as a way to connect their products. These companies formed the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), an organization devoted to maintaining the technology. This means that no single company “owns” Bluetooth technology, but that many members of the Bluetooth SIG work together to develop Bluetooth technology.
The name "Bluetooth"
'Bluetooth' was the code name for the SIG when it was first formed and the name stuck. The name "Bluetooth" is actually very old! It is from the 10th century Danish King Harald Blatand - or Harold Bluetooth in English. King Blatand was instrumental in uniting warring factions in parts of what is now Norway, Sweden and Denmark - just as Bluetooth technology is designed to allow collaboration between differing industries such as the computing, mobile phone and automotive markets.
Cable replacement
Bluetooth technology was originally intended to be a wireless replacement for cables and wires between things like phones and headsets or computers, keyboards and mice. It works great in those devices and it can do so much more—connecting TVs, music players and even home healthcare devices.
New connections
Bluetooth technology has continued to mature and now you can create new connections that weren’t possible using wires, like connecting your mobile phone to your car stereo, or printing a picture directly from your camera phone.

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