Lost in the hype about Siri is the fact that the iPhone 4S is the first available smartphone to support the Bluetooth 4.0 standard. Announced in early 2010, Bluetooth 4.0 focuses on low-energy, sensor-filled devices that can be powered by button cell batteries. Examples include pedometers, heart rate monitors, glucose meters, and home automation tools.
Now that the first Bluetooth 4.0 ready handset has hit the market, the Bluetooth SIG group has created a new logo and name to describe these low-power devices. Starting soon, any device with a Bluetooth 4.0 compatible radio will be branded with the name Bluetooth Smart or Bluetooth Smart Ready. A new Bluetooth logo will be emblazoned on packaging to help customers locate this category of Bluetooth products.
The iPhone 4S may be the first Bluetooth Smart compatible smartphone, but it's not the first Bluetooth 4.0 hardware available from Apple. The Cupertino company also added Bluetooth 4.0 support to the latest Mac Mini and MacBook Air models. These Apple products will be ready to connect to Bluetooth Smart devices once they begin to hit the market in the upcoming months.
Market and Use Case Expansion Create Need to Denote Compatible Bluetooth v4.0 Devices
KIRKLAND, WA – Oct. 24, 2011 – The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) announced two new brand extensions to its globally recognized logo today in an effort to create consumer awareness around compatibility for new devices implementing Bluetooth v4.0 – the Bluetooth Smart Ready trademark and the Bluetooth Smart trademark. Bluetooth Smart Ready devices are phones, tablets, PCs and TVs that sit at the center of a consumer's connected world and implement a Bluetooth v4.0 dual mode radio. Bluetooth Smart devices are sensor-type devices like heart-rate monitors or pedometers that run on button-cell batteries and were built to collect a specific piece of information. Bluetooth Smart devices include only a single-mode low energy Bluetooth v4.0 radio.
Bluetooth Smart Ready devices can connect to the billions of Bluetooth devices already in use today and also to new Bluetooth Smart devices just starting to enter the market. Bluetooth Smart devices, due to their revolutionary low power consumption, will only connect with products denoted with the Bluetooth Smart Ready mark, plus those designated specifically by product manufacturers.
"Here's the truth of the matter: Bluetooth Smart and Bluetooth Smart Ready devices will revolutionize the way we collect, share and use information," said Michael Foley, Ph.D., executive director of the Bluetooth SIG. "In order to ensure consumers know what these extraordinary devices have to offer, we created the Bluetooth Smart and Bluetooth Smart Ready marks. These new logos will help consumers manage compatibility, and encourage manufacturers to build their best Bluetooth devices yet."
A recent In-Stat report forecasts Bluetooth device shipments will exceed two billion in 2013 alone, fueled largely by the rapid introduction of Bluetooth Smart devices across many different industry segments.
"Consumers can look at new Bluetooth Smart Ready devices the same way they would a 3D ready TV – having the TV is just the first part of the puzzle, you need glasses and content in order to really experience 3D," said Suke Jawanda, CMO of the Bluetooth SIG. "Once consumers have a Bluetooth Smart Ready device, like the new iPhone 4S, they can continue connecting to existing Bluetooth devices and are also ready to experience the new world of Bluetooth Smart peripheral devices that will carry the Bluetooth Smart logo."