Feeds

We're backing Bluetooth, Intel reiterates

Coming to market more quickly than USB, apparently

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

The essential guide to IT transformation

Yes, Bluetooth is late, but, hey, that's always the case when you're trying to establish a standard. So said Intel's Mobile Comms and Initiatives Marketing Manager, Simon Ellis, yesterday.

Ellis, who just so happens to be the Bluetooth SIG marketing chief, was in town to reiterate Chipzilla's commitment to the wireless connectivity technology.

"Bluetooth is a standard, not a product," he said, so it's development process shouldn't be seen as if it were one.

But back to Bluetooth. "Right now, we're at the same place that it took USB five years to get to," he said, citing that other Intel-backed standard, and one that, pace Apple, has largely failed to set the industry alight. The point of the comparison is that Bluetooth is only two years old.

Version 1.1 of the Bluetooth spec. was finalised earlier this month, said Ellis. The next stage is to define fully the four initial usage 'profiles' that define the various categories if Bluetooth-enabled device. They are file-transfer, data synchronisation, Internet access and a headset interface. Devices must fit one or more of these profiles in order to be classed as a Bluetooth device, he said. Other, optional profiles are in development, including imaging, printing and ad hoc 'personal area networks'.

Ellis said Intel will ultimately build the technology into its chipsets. Separately, he said Bluetooth will built into PCs within two to five years.

That's in addition to Chipzilla's promise to integrate 802.11b. The Mighty Chip Lizard's desktop products chief, Louis Burns, said at the Intel Developer Forum last month that the company would build wireless support into its chipsets in the late 2002/early 2003 timeframe.

Ellis also predicted a shift toward the faster 802.11a standard, with products in "two years", when quality of service issues are likely to have been resolved. 802.11a is faster than the current 802.11b standard, and operates at the 5GHz frequency, well away from the 2.4GHz band in which both 802.11b and Bluetooth co-exist.

The take-up of 802.11a is ultimately dependent on just when spectrum regulators allow use of the 5GHz band in countries where that frequency is regulated. Ellis is confident that where that's the case they will permit the use of the standard, just as some regulators have been persuaded to allow 2.4GHz to be used. That band is unregulated in most countries.

Equally, Ellis seemed confident that most supporters of HyperLAN, alternative to 802.11a, will come over to the standard preferred by non-Europeans. Intel is not backing HyperLAN, said Ellis.

Will 802.11 and Bluetooth co-exist? Ellis thinks so. The technology issues - operating on the same frequency, there's a risk of packet loss - will be resolved by design and through the robust nature of both systems (the likelihood of packet loss is small, and both simply re-send corrupt data). The shift to 802.11a will help too. ®

Related Stories

Intel to integrate USB, wireless into P4 chipsets
Bluetooth demos flop at CeBit

Boost IT visibility and business value

More from The Register

next story
Pay to play: The hidden cost of software defined everything
Enter credit card details if you want that system you bought to actually be useful
Shoot-em-up: Sony Online Entertainment hit by 'large scale DDoS attack'
Games disrupted as firm struggles to control network
HP busts out new ProLiant Gen9 servers
Think those are cool? Wait till you get a load of our racks
Silicon Valley jolted by magnitude 6.1 quake – its biggest in 25 years
Did the earth move for you at VMworld – oh, OK. It just did. A lot
VMware's high-wire balancing act: EVO might drag us ALL down
Get it right, EMC, or there'll be STORAGE CIVIL WAR. Mark my words
Forrester says it's time to give up on physical storage arrays
The physical/virtual storage tipping point may just have arrived
prev story

Whitepapers

Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Backing up distributed data
Eliminating the redundant use of bandwidth and storage capacity and application consolidation in the modern data center.
The essential guide to IT transformation
ServiceNow discusses three IT transformations that can help CIOs automate IT services to transform IT and the enterprise
Next gen security for virtualised datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.