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Wireless Networking Communications Handhelds Hardware

1 Kilometer Bluetooth Link to Cell Phone 94

carbolic writes " has posted an article (with pics) about performing a Bluetooth connection over a distance of 1 kilometer. They claim it is a new world record. They used a Class 1 USB adapter modded using a kit from The over-the-air connection went to an unmodified Sony Ericsson T610 at a distance of 'about 3,300 feet' and they transferred a few pictures. This test was to a paired device pre-configured for the built-in ObexFTP access, but the implication is that now it's easy to Bluesnarf without even being near the target phone."
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1 Kilometer Bluetooth Link to Cell Phone

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  • Beautiful (Score:3, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:42PM (#9849633)
    Now, where's my little bluetooth remote controlled helicopter.

    *Rubs hands together in malicious glee*

    Now I can take pictures of people 1 kilometer away, and transfer them to my laptop....


  • But.. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:42PM (#9849636)
    why? Doesn't bluetooth have its place, and 802.11x have a separate one?

    I guess it has a "cool" factor, but not quite high enough to overcome the redundancy factor in this case.
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:43PM (#9849642)
    1 kilometer = 4.97096954 furlongs
  • Oh the possibilities (Score:5, Interesting)

    by f8ejf ( 755486 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:43PM (#9849650)
    Since bluetooth is in the 2.4GHz band, hams can probably use boosters of up to 200W legally, just like with WiFi.

    We here at the radioclub were able to cover considerable distances with decent directional WiFi waveguides and 10W amplifiers. I wonder if bluetooth would fare as well... Hmmm, something to play with during the holidays :-)
  • fantastic.. (Score:1, Interesting)

    May just be me here but I can't think of a use which would need that much distance... hell I can't think of a use for bluetooth in any distance... but then I hate mobile phones so I maybe biast
    • Re:fantastic.. (Score:5, Insightful)

      by jrockway ( 229604 ) * <> on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:56PM (#9849727) Homepage Journal
      > I hate mobile phones so I may be biased

      I hear you. I'm glad I'm not the only one who doesn't want to replace my computer with a phone. People were suggesting that in 3 years there would be no computers, just phones (in yesterday's article). That, to me, is rediculous.

      I personally quite like my PDA and Desktop and Laptop. I want a phone to make phone calls. I want my Desktop to run emacs and make. I want my Laptop to run iCal. Is there a problem with this?

      Do one thing and do it well.
      • I want my Desktop to run emacs and make.

        Well, actually, I use emacs to run my cell phone. But that's just me.

      • Well, if you could hook your phone up to a full screen display and a keyboard [] & mouse, and you would have all the software you liked, would you still not want to use your phone as a computer? How long till handhelds have enough firepower [] to run things like KDE? Of course you might not be able to run Doom3, but even that might one day be feasable. Things like the PSP [] show 3D graphics can be put into mobile devices.

        You would of course have KDE mode going for full screen displays, and something like QTopi []
        • I would rather have a black and white( or blue and black) display phone that is REALLY small with almost no screen BUT has a blue tooth connection and is data enabled.

          This would allow for lower price, lower power consumption and SMALL size.

          WHY have a large color screen on a blue tooth phone when my palm has a bigger screen, faster speed and can connect easily to the phone?

      • jrockways attitude to mobile phones reiterates a study done recently, and annecdotal evidence I recieve from my non-tech friends:

        people want a mobile phone calls.

        Desired additioanl functionality usually extends to somewhere to keep your contact list of phone numbers.

        Have you backed up your mobile phone lately? []
      • Do one thing and do it well.

        I'm a bit undecided on this concept. I love it as a principle of .+nix - I understand that each program generally does one task and this makes .+nix powerful.

        But the problem seems to be with defining "one thing". What is one thing? Make calls? Recieve calls? Be my personal communications device?

        So far, it seems to me that someone came up with this phrase "Do one thing and do it well." and it stuck, but noone really thought it through. It's kinda like the KISS - "Keep it sim

    • Re:fantastic.. (Score:3, Interesting)

      by MooCows ( 718367 )
      To me the advantage of a mobile phone with bluetooth (and GPRS) is I can connect to it with my PDA and my Laptop.

      Result: GPRS/UMTS on my PDA and Laptop.

      Which means internet access everywhere there's mobile phone coverage.

      Result: Slashdot everywhere :)
  • Two files has been copied previously, while one file was had never been transferred until this test to ensure it was a true FTP over-the-air transfer.

    Uhhh ... yeeeaah.

  • by FunWithHeadlines ( 644929 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:53PM (#9849709) Homepage
    So what do geeks do on a Friday night? They discuss extending bluetooth ranges in experiments and speculate on all the ways it could be used, both useful and silly. Now if they could just figure out a way to use bluetooth to get dates...
  • $12 Walkie Talkies (Score:4, Interesting)

    by aklix ( 801048 ) <aklixpro AT gmail DOT com> on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:54PM (#9849716) Homepage Journal
    I used 2 $12 walkie talkies to control an RC car. Never tested it a mile because i wouldnt be able to see it (suposedly goes 2 miles) but it kept in great range, even when we used binoculars. Simple task too.
  • Not very exciting (Score:3, Interesting)

    by SuperBanana ( 662181 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @09:59PM (#9849748) has posted an article (with pics)

    And they're pretty lame pictures, at that. One is of a guy holding something AWAY from the camera that looks like it might be a box. Or a piece of cardboard. We have no idea. Another pic shows a picture of a hill, with a GIANT red hand-drawn arrow pointing to where the phone is. Picture #3 is the boot screen for the phone, courtesy T-Mobile. Then we get a blurry pic of the linksys bluetooth adapter with a giant cable coming off it...and last but not least...a picture of the bluetooth-raped traumatized, it has switched itself off.

    Cute the Visene guy- "Wooooooow".

    • Cute the Visene guy- "Wooooooow".

      I'm guessing that should be "Cue the Visine guy"?

      I assume that you're referring to Nixon's former speech writer, later game show host, Ben Stein [] when you say, "Visine guy"...?

  • Soon we will see people walking around screaming at their phone because someone hacked it? I think that would be amusing.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      So then...

      1) Hack bluetooth phone at random

      2) Force it to play an .mp3 of "Can you hear me now?" at maximum volume and for an inderterminate amount of time.

      3) ???

      4) Profit! (Or at least laughter on my part...)
  • can u smell it? (Score:1, Interesting)

    The fact that the device was "pre-configured" and then "unmodified" should raise a few eyebrows. This is pure FUD and marketing bull. Anyone with at least a plebsworth of IT sense knows that to form a connection it takes two ends. I havent read the article but then again I don't need to.
  • Pfffft (Score:3, Funny)

    by Billobob ( 532161 ) <> on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:34PM (#9849904) Homepage Journal
    My tesla coil has a range of blowing up every light bulb within 5 miles MINIMUM...
  • by mikael ( 484 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:39PM (#9849928)
    The over-the-air connection went to an unmodified Sony Ericsson T610 at a distance of 'about 3,300 feet' and they transferred a few pictures. This test was to a paired device pre-configured for the built-in ObexFTP access, but the implication is that now it's easy to Bluesnarf without even being near the target phone."

    And they haven't even started using Pringles cans yet.

    • Just wait until they find the old primestar dish. WOO!!!
    • You mean the scary pringles can shaped wireless sniffer boxes like the ones the us army has been developing to drop over battles fields, which each have a range of 1Km and form an ad hock network to report/jam 'the badguys' traffic.


      Do you mean 2 pringles cans and a piece of string, like the ones the us army will have to use when 'the badguys' pick them all up and drop them back over the us army?
      • lmao...mod parent up please..either informative or choose
      • I meant the low budget wireless booster cans, with the extra spicy cajun flavour []. Our research team spent a weekend determining which cans were more efficient (the original flavor, sour cream and onion, sweet mesquite BBQ, or cheese and onion). So far, there seems to be no difference due to flavor. However, we may have to repeat the experiments, just to make sure weather conditions didn't have any influence on the results.
        • Te he,

          That is soooo, cool.

          Its like someone saw the american armys multi-million dollar research project for spying, and thought, mmm...

          Its REALLY shows that defense gets totally screwed by defense contractors, i mean $10,000 for an f'ing pringles can.

          I mean just get a load of these and use them to hack the troups cells and download all there SMS's etc.

          And the american govenment was worrying about these cellphone coke cans, look out for the pringles band coming to your government building soon ;)

          The or
  • by gnuber ( 605327 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @10:49PM (#9849970)
    I hate it when /. posts blatant product advertisements as stories. This story was submitted by "Carbolic", whose given URL (mouse-over his name) is He talks about a story (in the third person), and links to the "kit from". The small print on that page notes that is a member site of . The $99 "kit" linked to is just a $45 Linksys adaptor [] and a CD of freeware and drivers (you'd be better off downloading the newest versions from the net). A fool and his money are soon parted, I guess. This is the second time [] this week that Carbolic has posted a story linking to his site.

    I won't fault Carbolic for pimping his site, particularly since he isn't hiding his affiliation. But the /. editors should filter this spam out.

  • The flip side (Score:3, Interesting)

    by macemoneta ( 154740 ) on Friday July 30, 2004 @11:06PM (#9850043) Homepage
    With a good sized dish, you can probably monitor anyone in your neighborhood typing on a BT keyboard. Encryption doesn't do any good, if the clear text data is compromised.
    • I would have thought - for a keyboard (or cordless phone, mouse etc etc) it would be very easy for the manufacturer to stick in a very very long symetric key - eg 1Mbit that both the transmitter and reciever units had, that way you would need an awful lot of clear text to break it and brute force would be out. 1Mbit of memory is worth nothing and even something like 16k that comes on most cheap microcontrollers would do. I would even go as far as to have a little metal spot that you could touch them togethe
      • No, it's not crap. What you're proposing is a combination of NFC (Near Field Communications) and BT, where the NFC is used for key exchange. Very large keys are not needed for sufficiently strong security.

        My garage door opener has a conceptually similar technology... Instead of setting little DIP switches for the key, you "train" (synchronize) the opener to recognize each remote. It's a very intuitive user interface.
        • yep there are dip switches on my doorbell too but only about 8. is NFC still wireless? i would have thought an actual physical connection would be safer. Long keys might not be needed but considering the cost isnt a problem anymore with cheap memory, the longer the key the more secure, future proof, and geeky your product becomes. Whats the deal with bluetooth? and why didnt they just push wide adoption of this sort of thing from the start? i.e phones having a little metal bit and if both phones have it you
          • NFC is very short range wireless (a few centimeters, so it's effectively a touch). More info here [], and here []. You can consider it an evolution in the user interface of existing wireless systems, like BT or WiFi.
    • It turns out to be much harder than that even for unencrypted data.

      The frequency hopping is a major factor. The psuedo-random hopping sequence is determined when the devices first connect. If you're not listening at that time (and know the device addresses of each), to get on track is far more difficult than it is worth. Remember its hopping ~1000 times a second.

      I've used $40K USD Bluetooth sniffers for development and debugging. It's difficult enough to get the sniffer to sync when you are carefully
    • Although a user could choose not to enable Bluetooth encryption for a keyboard, the specification covering keyboards (HID) mandates that encryption be supported.
      • Even with BT encryption, BT is considered weak []. Remember that BT devices are low-power, which means that they likely don't have the computational resources for strong encryption.

        Since a BT keyboard tends to remain in the same general location, and a malicious listener can be a considerable distance away undetected, spending even a few days to crack the encryption is entirely reasonable. Wardriving tools for BT exist in the wild [].

        It's not as easy (or even possible in most cases) to add additional layers

  • by m4k3r ( 777443 )
    Wouldn't it have been easier to just take the phone with you ? Surely, that's why they're designed small enough to fit in your hand ?

    Oh, yeah, I forgot this was /.
  • You can really tell the geek/civilian ratio has gone more and more to the civilian non-geek side by the number of 'What is this useful for?' posts on this story. A real geek knows that a hack is important in and of itself and no usefulness is implied or important.
  • I am seeing ALOT of advertising companies trying their hand at this to bluejack people with advertising. An easy way to make money, seeing as the only cost would involve equipment. I for one normally accept bluejacking attempts just because of pure curiosity, Im sure 6months down the line I wont be....
  • Actually, I was at DefCon covering the convention for a documentary about hackers and I interviewed the kids who designed the device in question. The thing about it is that it's not your average Yagi - they've actually mounted the Yagi directional antenna and associated Bluetooth gear on a Ruger Mini-14 stock, along with a scope and a hefty helping of electrical tape. It's creepy seeing one of the inventors standing in front of a window on the third story, 'sniping' phones through walls in another buildin

Experience varies directly with equipment ruined.