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June 16, 2016

Bluetooth 5 announced: Double speed, quad range, eight times capacity and more

by John_A

It doesn’t happen often but Bluetooth is getting an upgrade all the way to a new version, Bluetooth 5. This exciting as it means faster, better connected devices that don’t use much power to stay connected.

The new Bluetooth 5, announced today by Bluetooth SIG, will have double the speed, quadruple the range and increases data capacity by 800 per cent. It should also work far better outdoors than current offerings. In an age of smart connected homes and smartwatch devices this is very good news indeed.

Bluetooth is lower power consuming than Wi-Fi, but has been limited by range and bandwidth, until now. We say now, Bluetooth 5 is expected to start arriving later this year and early in 2017 inside new devices.

Expect new smartphones, smartwatches, speakers, headphones, smart bulbs, connected cameras and more to sport the new Bluetooth 5 connection. There are currently over 30,000 companies working with Bluetooth SIG so expect this to appear on a huge scale when it starts to arrive later this year.

This could also mean indoor location tracking, like that used by Apple in its Stores, could become wider spanning and more accurate than ever.

Expect to hear manufacturers announcing their devices which will pack Bluetooth 5 towards the end of 2016. Here’s hoping that the expected September iPhone 7 announcement has a Bluetooth bonus lined up.

With Wi-Fi HaLow moving into the low power, long-range connectivity sector it’ll be interesting to see how these two square up.

READ: What is Wi-Fi HaLow and why does it matter? – Pocket-lint

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