Bluetooth is interesting because it is now possible to connect
many devices that normally might not connect wirelessly. And
it requires very little user input.
All the rage lately is the cell phone headpieces that use Bluetooth
technology. These are the little wireless hands-free units that
people use in their cars and even while walking down the street.
But, what is Bluetooth and how do these devices work?
Bluetooth is a technology standard that allows devices to connect
wirelessly. This is interesting because it is now possible to
connect many devices that normally might not connect wirelessly.
And it requires very little user input. That means you don’t
need to know how to do anything, just put in the batteries and
the stuff works.
There is a group called the Bluetooth Special Interest Group
and over one thousand companies belong to this group. Their job
is to agree upon the rules by which these devices connect and
make our lives easier. By making a set of rules (like the protocols
that allow us to connect computers to the Internet), there is
a standard that all manufacturers adhere to and this makes interconnecting
devices simple. Bluetooth makes it easy to connect things like
your Palm Pilot, laptop, or tablet PC to a wireless network without
you needing to configure anything.
Other Bluetooth connections that work are the new hands-free
cell phone earpieces. These are great. Basically, you can take
the earpiece right out of the box and put in the batteries. Once
you turn on your cell phone, the two devices begin communicating
(this assumes you have a Bluetooth enabled cell phone, and not
all phones are Bluetooth enabled).
Once they establish some basics, the earpiece becomes an extension
of the phone and you can leave the phone on your hip or even in
your backpack or briefcase (up to 30 feet away) while the wireless
earpiece sits on your ear. You can receive calls, switch calls,
and (with some) let you make calls with voice-activation and redial.
Again, you don’t need to do anything to get the devices
to connect. Your Bluetooth headset will not interfere with other
phones because your phone and the headset establish a sort of
personal channel that they will use for all communications. That
communication is specific to only those two devices and it works
almost like a cell phone. You do not hear other people’s
Bluetooth conversations the same way you do not hear their cell
phone calls while using your phone.
Bluetooth technology is incredible and it will make our lives
easier and easier. Picture a day when you can plug in your television
set, cable box, stereo system, Xbox, and DVD player without ever
needing to connect them to each other. They will automatically
find each other and connect perfectly. This is the future of Bluetooth
technology and I look forward to it.