Bluetooth 5 promises greater range, double the speed and a big broadcasting boost

17-06-2016 |   |  By Paul Whytock

Significantly increased range, speed and broadcast messaging capacity are some of the attributes that the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) is promising with the launch of Bluetooth 5.

Expected later this year, Bluetooth 5 is predicted to provide reliable Internet of Things (IoT) connections that make full-home, building and outdoor use a practical reality.

Increasing broadcast capacity is predicted to advance the next generation of services like beacons and location-relevant information and navigation.

Bluetooth 5 promises quadruple range and double the speed of low energy connections while increasing the capacity of connectionless data broadcasts eight-fold.

This say industry pundits will redefine the way Bluetooth devices transmit information, moving away from the app-paired-to-device model to a connectionless IoT where there is less need to download an app or connect the app to a device.

More than 371 million Bluetooth enabled beacons are projected to ship by 2020, according to Patrick Connolly, Principal Analyst at ABI Research. With eight times the broadcast messaging capacity, Bluetooth 5 will further propel the adoption and deployment of beacons and location-based services in the home automation, enterprise, and industrial markets.

In scenarios where contextual awareness like navigation and pin-point location are crucial – such as trouble free airport navigation experiences, asset tracking of warehouse inventory, emergency response, even smart city infrastructure that helps the visually impaired be more mobile, Bluetooth 5 will send custom information people find useful in that moment without connection and application barriers.


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By Paul Whytock

Paul Whytock is European Editor for Electropages. He has reported extensively on the electronics industry in Europe, the United States and the Far East for over twenty years. Prior to entering journalism he worked as a design engineer with Ford Motor Company at locations in England, Germany, Holland and Belgium.

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