The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has announced planned updates to the Bluetooth specification, bringing longer range, higher speeds and mesh networking to the technology. The enhancements are scheduled for 2016 and are “focused squarely on increasing its Internet of Things (IoT) functionality,” the organisation says.
“Announced updates will provide a variety of benefits for the growing number of IoT applications. For example, the range of Bluetooth Smart, set to increase up to 4x, will transform smart home and infrastructure applications and will deliver an extended, more robust connection for full-home or outdoor use cases.
“A 100% increase in speed, without increasing energy consumption, will enable faster data transfers in critical applications, such as medical devices, increasing responsiveness and lowering latency. Mesh networking will enable Bluetooth devices to connect together in networks that can cover an entire building or home, opening up home and industrial automation applications.”
“Bluetooth SIG member tools, like the recently launched Bluetooth Developer Studio, and training programs will be updated to ensure strong developer support for these new IoT features,” the association adds. “Additional features and profile updates contained in the 2016 roadmap will be previewed in the coming months.”
“There is significant demand from our members and the industry at large to enhance Bluetooth with the new capabilities we’re announcing today,” says Toby Nixon, chairman of the Bluetooth SIG board of directors. “The technical updates planned for Bluetooth technology in 2016 will help make these expectations a reality and accelerate growth in IoT.”
“The Bluetooth technology roadmap is a powerful expression of our mission to continue as a catalyst for industry innovation,” adds Mark Powell, executive director of Bluetooth SIG. “Bluetooth has been adopted by countless developers and manufacturers as their connectivity solution of choice for the IoT. The new functionality we will soon be adding will further solidify Bluetooth as the backbone of IoT technology.”