The new Bluetooth specs promise a better range, and low energy consumption that can pull from small coin-cell batteries.
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has officially announced the release of Bluetooth Core Specification 4.0, or rather, revealed the adoption of Bluetooth low energy wireless technology for 4.0. The SIG said that the new specs will open an entirely new market that requires low cost and low power connectivity. Now a small, "coin-cell" battery can power Bluetooth devices, ideal for healthcare, security, home entertainment, and other markets.
The formal announcement stated that v4.0 will feature ultra-low peak, average and idle mode power consumption. The technology also features an enhanced range, multi-vendor interoperability, low cost, and the ability to run "for years" on standard coin-cell batteries. The specs also say that the technology supports small data packets transferred at 1 Mbps, 24 bit CRC on all packets, and even provides full AES-128 encryption.
"With today’s announcement the race is on for product designers to be the first to market," said Michael Foley, Ph.D., executive director, Bluetooth SIG. "Bluetooth low energy modules for all sorts of new products may now be qualified – this is an important step towards our goal of enabling new markets with Bluetooth wireless technology. For example, the Continua Health Alliance has already selected Bluetooth low energy technology as a transport for the next version of its guidelines."
The SIG said that the new specs will come in two flavors: dual-mode and single-mode. In dual-mode, Bluetooth low energy functionality is integrated into an existing Classic Bluetooth controller. The single-mode version, ideal for highly integrated and compact devices, uses a lightweight link layer for ultra low power idle mode operation.