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Monday, January 25, 2010

NET-TECH REPORT: Technology Tutorial - Introduction to Bluetooth Technology

The Net-Tech Report with Chris Kauza

We focus a lot on networking with other people, the technology you can use to reach larger numbers of interested people, and the power that can bring in growing your business. But did you ever wonder just “how” all of that networking technology works and connects you? Well, if you have an iPod, a wireless headset for your phone, or run applications that are “aware” of other nearby applications that they can talk to, you are probably using something that is “Bluetooth enabled”.

You might have heard the word “Bluetooth” thrown around a lot over the last few years, and if you think it has something to do with dental hygiene – think again!

Bluetooth is a wireless networking protocol that was designed to allow low bandwidth wireless connections to become easy to use so even those who are unfamiliar with wireless can use them. Version 1.1 of Bluetooth describes a low power, short range wireless networking technology that uses radio waves to send data at rates up to 720 kilobits a second.

The specification for Bluetooth provides for different classes of radio that allow transmission ranges of up to 100 meters by boosting the radio power. The technology of Bluetooth isn't limited to line of sight transmission since it uses directional waves that are capable of transmitting through walls, cars, buildings and other obstructions.

Bluetooth is an industry standard communication of wireless, meaning that it enables the connection of different devices such as cell phones, computers, digital cameras, and other types of electronic devices. The specification of Bluetooth defines a radio system and a 'stack" of protocol layers and profiles. The highest layer is the application layer, while the lowest layer is the radio.

The specification for Bluetooth eliminates the need for cables by providing a small form factor, low cost wireless solution that will link computers, cell phones, and other electronics. Bluetooth also allows users to connect many ranges of devices quickly and easily expands communications capabilities.

The small size of the Bluetooth radio ensures that it can be built into one or two very small microchips, and then integrated into any electronic device where wireless operations would be an advantage. This is what is known as a “Bluetooth enabled” device.

Bluetooth offers a robust link, which ensures that normal operating circumstances are not interrupted by interference from other signals that are operating in the same frequency band.

Known for its worldwide operation, Bluetooth radio operates in the 2.4 GHz frequency band, which is license-free and available to any type of radio system in the world. You can count Bluetooth working virtually anywhere in e world. Further, it has a higher level of electronic authentication between devices, providing more secure communications between your devices.

Bluetooth also boasts power optimization. The radio is power friendly and the software for Bluetooth is very configurable, limiting the power consumption of equipment. The actual radio itself only consumes a small amount of power from a cellular phone.

The Bluetooth Solution

Bluetooth technology takes small area networking to the next level by removing the need for user intervention and helps keep transmission power very low to preserve battery power. Each transmission signal to and from your cellular phone uses just 1 MW of power.

Bluetooth is a networking standard that works on two levels:

  1. It provides agreement at the physical level, as Bluetooth is a radio frequency standard.
  2. It provides agreement at the level of protocol, where products have to agree on when bits are sent, how many are sent, and how the parties in conversation can be sure the message received is the same one that was sent.

Bluetooth Wireless Networking

Bluetooth technology offers three different types of defined ranges, based on output ranges. Class 1 devices are the most powerful, as they can have up to 100 MW of power, with a regular antenna giving them a range of around 130 - 330 feet.

The class 2 devices are lower power, offering up to 2.5 MW of power. A regular antenna gives them a range of around 50 - 100 feet. Class 3 devices use even less power, up to 1 MW of power to be exact. With a regular antenna, they have an effective range of around 16 - 33 feet.

By design, Bluetooth technology is optimally designed for short-range communication. The short range characteristics reduce the chance of interference between your devices and those that belong to others who are nearby, and makes it technologically easier to provide more secure communications between devices.

Secondly, the lower power used for short range means a longer battery life. Most Bluetooth devices get their power from a battery, meaning that anything you can do to lengthen the battery life is very important. Bluetooth is most frequently used with wireless controllers, the internet, and even wireless headsets.

I hope you enjoyed this Technology Tutorial on Bluetooth technology. If you'd like more information on how to leverage technology to grow your business, feel free to contact me directly at ckauza "at" or review our website at

For more information, please visit Chris' TNNW Bio.

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1 comment:

Rick Itzkowich said...

Chris, thank you for the easy explanation of these terms. I like when technogeek is translated into plain English

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