Feeds

MS to join Bluetooth in December, without get-out on IP

No special deals on licence conditions, even for Microsoft, says Ericsson

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

New hybrid storage solutions

Microsoft will officially announce that it has joined the Bluetooth SIG early next month, it seems inevitable. But it seems equally inevitable to that Redmond will not get all the variations in terms and conditions it's thought to have been seeking. As revealed here last week (see story), Microsoft is already beavering away to build support for Bluetooth into its platforms, despite the fact that officially the company isn't a Bluetooth member. The world and its dog bar Microsoft, however, supports Bluetooth, which is intended to be a cheap, ubiquitous wireless standard allowing practically everything to talk to everything else, and it's difficult to see how it could fail to take off, even if Microsoft actively opposed it. Microsoft however had two problems with Bluetooth. First of all it wasn't one of the five founder, leading and controlling members, and second Bluetooth's IP policy is decidedly MS-hostile. By signing up to the SIG you agree to giving up your rights to anything you contribute to the Bluetooth standard. The Bluetooth licensing Ts & Cs are really quite GPL-ish, and Microsoft hasn't historically been that kind of company. But it can't be working on Bluetooth without having already cut a deal in private, or at the very least to have one agreed in principle. The next likely opportunity for an announcement is the Bluetooth conference in Los Angeles early next month, so we reckon that's probably going to be the day. Microsoft will inevitably be recruited to an expanded version of the founding members' group, and it's rumoured that this will go up from five to nine or ten. It's not clear who the others are but more anally retentive readers might like to read their way through the thousand-plus entries in the SIG membership lists and figure out who's big and not there. But it's now highly unlikely that the IP deal will be changed because of Microsoft's entry. Staff from founder company Ericsson, speaking here yesterday at a Bluetooth briefing (report to follow), firmly declined to speculate about Microsoft joining, but were adamant that the Bluetooth Ts & Cs were set in concrete. "We can't change the rules for Microsoft, because then we'd have to change them for everybody else." That nails Ericsson's colours firmly to the mast, and leaves virtually no room for manoeuvre. You can however take a guess at what that will mean for Microsoft's Bluetooth policy. Microsoft does already operate a firm 'we adhere to open standards' policy as far as XML is concerned, and has yet to be caught pulling the old 'embrace, extend, engulf' gag. So maybe it's not such a big camel to swallow after all. ®

The next step in data security

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.