Bluetooth 4.1 announced, can be upgraded over-the-air

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The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) announced version 4.1 of its wireless communication standard. Bluetooth 4.1 is the first major update since 2010 when Bluetooth 4.0 was announced, and offers enhancements to make the highly popular wireless protocol to be more robust, as well as offering a number of tweaks designed to cement its ubiquity with shipments of Bluetooth-enabled devices projected to hit 4.5 billion over the next five years.

Specifically, Bluetooth 4.1 brings about better cooperation between LTE radios and Bluetooth devices in order to avoid interference, noted Tom's Hardware. Flexibility is also added to reconnection time intervals so that devices can reconnect faster and without intervention. Support for bulk data transfer was also added, which should be a boon for wearable devices that support the standard.

Finally, Bluetooth 4.1 also lays the groundwork for the creation of a dedicated channel, such as for channeling IPv6 communications. As it is, Bluetooth radios that are already on the market can be upgraded to 4.1 with an over-the-air software update.

On a related note, Broadcom has introduced its new BCM20736 solution that combines Bluetooth, an ARM processor, and wireless charging into a single system-on-chip. This makes it easier for vendors to incorporate these capabilities into their gadgets, and also significant improvement in terms of power efficiency.

For more:
- check out this article at Tom's Hardware
- check out this article at The Verge

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