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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

WiBree finally merges with Bluetooth group

Finally! Nokia's WiBree low power version of Blutooth has merged with the Bluetooth Special Interest group (which is perhaps where it should have been all the time to avoid confusion but being outside got it much more attention than it would have had otherwise!).
This is important for standardisation and WiBree will be first point of contact for Bluetooth connections and to avoid confusion.
Wibree consumes only a fraction of the power of classic Bluetooth radios. In many cases it makes it possible to operate these devices for more than a year without recharging.
Using Bluetooth technology's high consumer awareness (86% globally), the Bluetooth SIG's large membership of 8000 companies) and its development and qualification programs, the ultra low power solution will be integrated faster and at a lower cost to the industry and consumers.
"By including or referencing other wireless technologies like ultra wideband for high speed applications, near field communication (NFC)for association and now Wibree for ultra low power applications under the well-established Bluetooth profiles, we are opening up a host of new applications and functionality while keeping the user experience consistent," said Michael Foley, executive director of Bluetooth SIG. "Our members have been asking for an ultra low power Bluetooth solution. With Nokia's development and contribution to the Bluetooth specification with Wibree, we will be able to deliver this in approximately one year."

Wibree's development started at the Nokia Research Centre in 2001 and was launched in October 2006. So far Broadcom, Casio, CSR, Epson, ItoM, Logitech, Nordic Semiconductor, ST Microelectronics, Suunto, Taiyo Yuden and Texas Instruments have contributed to the interoperability specification, profiles and use case definition of Wibree in their respective areas of expertise and will continue this work in the
Bluetooth SIG working groups. Several new companies, including device, watch and access systems manufacturers will join the finalisation of the specification. Once the specification is finalised, the technology will be made broadly available to the
industry via the Bluetooth SIG.

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