The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has proposed the specifications for Bluetooth 2.1+EDR. This will include some features many will welcome, including much lower power consumption and simplified file transfers.
Michael Foley, the head of the Bluetooth SIG, gave a demonstration of prototype devices running the upcoming version of this short-range wireless networking standard to Gear Live.
According to Foley, Bluetooth 2.1 is expected to use so much less power than the current version that devices employing it will offer up to five times the battery lives of current ones.
Near Field Communication
Even though most handhelds and smartphones these days have Bluetooth built into them, many people still prefer to transferring files via Infrared, despite its drawbacks, like slow transfer speeds and the necessity of keeping ports aligned. This is because these people feel pairing up two devices so they can transfer files via Bluetooth is even more of a hassle.
Bluetooth 2.1 will offer an optional feature that will make this process much easier. Using what’s called Near Field Communication, two Bluetooth-enabled devices will be able to transfer files without going through a manual pairing process. Simply holding them close to each other will be enough to allow files to be exchanged.
The Bluetooth 2.1+EDR specification is still in the process of being finalized, and Foley says there’s typically a 3 to 6 month delay after finalization before devices using the new version are released.
Still, he’s confident that that the first devices and accessories with Bluetooth 2.1 will be available this holiday season.