What is Bluetooth?

What is it?

Bluetooth is a type of radio communication and networking protocol combined.

Why was it developed?

BluetoothIt was developed so devices close to one another could exchange data.

By close, we mean within about 10 metres of one another even if there is a wall in-between. But most often bluetooth is used within a metre or so such as pairing a mobile inside a car.

Advantages of Bluetooth

One advantage with Bluetooth working within a short range is that it only needs a tiny amount of radio power to work, less than a thousandth' of a Watt. A torch light uses about 1 Watt to light the bulb, so you can appreciate this is a tiny amount of power.

This means it is ideal for battery operated devices such as mobile phones.

Another advantage of Bluetooth is that it is completely automatic - every Bluetooth enabled device will sense the presence of another device within range. They can do this because they share a 'network protocol' that allows them to share data.

The protocol can reduce interference from other Bluetooth devices that are also exchanging data nearby. For example if Sam's mobile is exchanging data with Tom's mobile this will not interfere with Sarah's mobile also exchanging data with Mary's mobile nearby.

Another very common way of sending data over a short distance is to use Infra-Red. This is used widely in TV remote controls. The disadvantage of Infra-Red over Bluetooth is that you must point the control directly at the device.

Examples of how it is used.

A Bluetooth enabled phone will detect phones nearby and provide you with a list of usernames. You can then send a message, photograph or movie sitting on your phone to any of the usernames. They, of course, have to accept the offer but the rest of it is automatic.

A common use of Bluetooth is 'hand-free' operation of mobiles in the car. The handset becomes 'paired' with the bluetooth system in the car, so when a call comes in you can accept the call and converse using the car system. This allows you to talk using the mobile but most importantly - keeping your hands on the steering wheel.

Bluetooth is also used to exchange files between a smart device and a desktop computer - great for keeping your diary and work in synch.

Trivia Facts

Fact 1: Harold Blatand
"Bluetooth" refers to Harold Blatand, the 10th-Century Danish king who brought together the Danes and Norwegians.

Fact 2: Bluetooth enabled medical equipment
Bluetooth enabled medical equipment is being employed by an increasing number of hospitals around the world, in an effort to improve patient care.

Fact 3: Digital images sent over Bluetooth technology
You can view digital pictures on your television by sending images from laptops or mobile phones over a Bluetooth connection to a media viewer.

Fact 4: Printing with Bluetooth technology
You can send files from a computer to a printer wirelessly using Bluetooth technology.

Fact 5: Multi-point pairing
Multi-point pairing enables you to simultaneously connect two Bluetooth enabled devices (e.g. a phone can be connected to both a PC & a pair of headphones).

Challenge see if you can find out one extra fact on this topic that we haven't already told you

Click on this link: Bluetooth technology



Source of factoids: Thanks to Motorola.


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