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Bluetooth 4.0 To Reach Devices In Fourth Quarter 103

Posted by samzenpus
from the roll-it-out dept.
angry tapir writes "The Bluetooth 4.0 wireless specification could start to appear in devices such as headsets, smartphones and PCs by the fourth quarter, said the Bluetooth Special Interest Group. The new specification will be able to be used in lower-power devices than previous versions of the technology, including watches, pedometers, smart meters and other gadgets that run on coin-cell batteries."
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Bluetooth 4.0 To Reach Devices In Fourth Quarter

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  • by maxwell demon (590494) on Thursday March 04, 2010 @09:33AM (#31357174) Journal

    What's so bad about IR? I mean, except for the fact that most companies make remote controls which have to be held in a very narrow angle towards the device. But that's not a problem of IR per se; my first TV had an IR remote control where I wouldn't even have to point it vaguely in the direction of the TV.

  • by Vanderhoth (1582661) on Thursday March 04, 2010 @09:36AM (#31357204)

    As the following post to yours points out. PS3 controllers are Bluetooth enabled.

    That being said, I know if my PS3 is not actually off when I press the PS button on the controller to turn it on. It goes into standby. Of course my TV goes into a standby mode too, so in theory I could have a similar setup for a TV remote.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday March 04, 2010 @09:41AM (#31357238)
    I once posted about that (Not in Slashdot) and someone told me it wouldn't be feasible, because of the time it takes to do the pairing and because you'd have to have a constant link between the devices, even if the TV is off (because you wouldn't be able to turn it on). Please, someone with more knowledge, enlighten us.

    The PS3 does use Bluetooth for its remote control, and it's a point of contention among a lot of people. It absolutely has its pluses, but it does have some minuses, too. For instance, it sucks batteries dry. For most remotes in my house, I need to change the batteries every 3 or 4 years. For my PS3 remote, I'm changing them about once a year (sure, it's only a couple of bucks, but it's still kind of a pain).

    What I want to know is why are so many people adamant about wanting Bluetooth for remotes when plain old RF remotes would work fine? Bluetooth is essentially RF with an encryption layer on top of it (which is why you need to pair devices). Do you really need your remote control signals to be encrypted?!?
  • same ol' bt audio (Score:4, Informative)

    by distantbody (852269) on Thursday March 04, 2010 @09:41AM (#31357240) Journal
    They need to improve the music streaming. Currently its decompress the audio > real time lossy recompression with worse codec > transmit and then finally decompress. It's less than ideal for audio quality and battery life. I think data transmission over te skin would be good for the task. My ears get warm and tender after 10 minutes from using a bt headset anyway, maybe I'm just allergic to it...
  • by ircmaxell (1117387) on Thursday March 04, 2010 @09:52AM (#31357356) Homepage
    Well, what would be cool is if the spec allowed for dynamically powered devices. So the device would constantly modulate the power output to keep it just high enough to maintain connection. So if the default output is 2.5 mW (the actual output for a class 2 device), it could scale that back to save on power. So if the connected device is close enough, it could run at 0.25 mW as long as the connection is maintained. This would only work well if the modulation circuit was fast enough (otherwise if you increased the power needed faster than it could respond it would simply lose connection).

    There are 2 main reasons (as far as I can see) that bluetooth will always use more power than IR. First, is that turning electrical impulses to IR is a lot more efficient (using a LED) than turning electrical impulses into a EMF via an antenna (2.4 ghz has a wavelength of 12.5 cm. So the antenna needs to be either a 1/4 wavelength or a folded design to fit in a portable device). Second, is that unlike IR, bluetooth has frequency hopping built right in. So bluetooth has to have an extra layer of active processing to watch for interference on a channel, and jump to another one (this happens at around 1.6khz)... IR takes no measures against interference. Get someone with a common TV remote (assuming same frequency band) and they can disrupt your IR communication. So the power usage is definitely a tradeoff...

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