What comes to your mind when you hear the word Bluetooth? Well, not a lot of people know what Bluetooth® is and how this technology affects their lives so this article will be filling the black spaces in your knowledge about Bluetooth®.
The name “Bluetooth” is taken from the 10th century Danish King Harald Blatand (Harold Bluetooth in English) known for his unification of previously warring tribes from Denmark, Norway and Sweden. The logo itself was originally designed by a Scandinavian firm at the time the trade association was announced to the public.
Keeping to the traditions of the name, the logo combines the runic alphabetic characters “H” which looks similar to an asterisk and a “B”. Bluetooth® is an industrial specification for wireless personal area networks first developed by Ericsson, later formalized by the Bluetooth® Special Interest Group (SIG). The SIG was formally announced in May 20, 1999. It was established by Sony Ericsson, IBM, Intel, Toshiba and Nokia, and later joined by many other companies as Associate or Adopter members.
You may be thinking what can Bluetooth® do for me? Well think of it as a cable replacement, it allows you to connect compatible devices within a range of 10 meters. It can be used wirelessly to connect peripherals like printers or keyboards to computers, or to have PDAs communicate with nearby PDAs or with a computer. Bluetooth® enabled mobile phones like the Nokia N-Gage, use the technology to enable multiplayer games with a friend who has the same game on a compatible device; BMW was the first motor vehicle manufacturer to install handsfree Bluetooth® technology in its cars, adding it as an option on its 3 series, 5 series and X5 vehicles, since then other Manufacturers have followed suit, with many vehicles, including the 2004 Toyota Prius and the 2004 Lexus LS 430. The Bluetooth® car kit allows users with Bluetooth-enabled mobile phones to make use of some of the phone’s features, such as making calls, while the phone itself can be left in a suitcase or in the boot, for instance.
Before two (or more) Bluetooth enabled devices can communicate, they must first pair. A device is paired with each other through a manual process that requires the owner’s intervention, i.e. entering a PIN in each device so they can exchange a security key. Once paired, Bluetooth devices exchange information using specialized protocols called profiles.
Here is a short list of Bluetooth profiles:
· SPP- Serial Port Profile used for serial port emulation
· GAP- Generic Access Profile used link management and device discovery
· GOEP- Generic Object Exchange Profile used for object push, transferring files, and synchronization
· SDAP- Services Discovery Application Profile used for information and service discovery
· SP- Synchronization Profile
· FP- Fax Profile
· FTP- File Transfer Profile
· OPP- Object Push Profile for sending data objects between devices (e.g. business cards)
· HS- Headset Profile (e.g. Headset and mobile phone connections)
· DNP or DUN- Dial-up Network Profile for modems, mobile phones (e.g. Access your ISP using Pocket PC)
· IP- Intercom Profile for speaker phone type of functionality
· LAP- LAN Access Profile (e.g. A low bandwidth method of accessing a LAN)
· CTP- Cordless Telephone Profile (e.g. handset to base telephone connections)
Indeed Bluetooth is a very essential piece of technology, but like other pieces of technology, it has its flaws.
The latest hype around Bluetooth is called bluejacking.
Bluejacking is the sending of unsolicited messages over Bluetooth to Bluetooth-enabled devices such as mobile phones, PDAs or laptop computers. The name originated with a user named ajack on esato.com. Jack was in a bank, searching for other Bluetooth enabled devices. When he found a Nokia 7650, he sent the owner a message saying “Buy Ericsson”. He called it bluejacking, and it stuck ever since.
Bluejacking is quite harmless but because bluejacket people don’t know what is happening they think their phone caught a virus or it is in serious need of an exorcist. Usually, a bluejacker will only send a text message, but with most modern phones it’s possible to send images or sounds as well