12 February 2008
The Bluetooth SIG has formally announced its intent to allow Bluetooth to reside on top of an 802.11 radio. The decision, according to the Bluetooth SIG, has been driven by the majority of its 10,000 plus member companies. These companies, namely handset manufacturers have been looking for a high speed data channel ….. sooner rather than later.
So where does this leave ultra wideband (UWB)? The bad news is history, as of yesterday: it wasn’t ready, which is why member companies have pushed forward with a more stable and mature alternative. The good news is that work continues between the Bluetooth SIG and the WiMedia Alliance to ensure the presence of UWB as soon as regulatory allows.
Fiona Thomson, Senior Analyst with IMS Research commented, “In terms of WLAN penetration into handsets, it is still only a fraction compared with Bluetooth and in terms of its potential”. She added, “The combination of Bluetooth technology and WLAN certainly fills a void currently left by UWB. However, UWB has its own advantages and we envisage, as soon as UWB is mature enough, it will take its place.”
The Bluetooth SIG’s “two-phased” roadmap allows Bluetooth to satisfy use-cases that have not previously been viable for the technology. Whether it’s 802.11 or UWB, 2010 or later, the end result is more efficient wireless data transfer and a better consumer experience.
If you would like an interview with an expert in this area, please contact Alison Bogle, Marketing Manager, at
or +1 412-441-1888.