Introduction A decade or so back when a few professors got together to setup a small network called the "Internet" never in their wildest imaginations would they have ever thought it would reach highest as today. Internet has become so widespread that we see it merely as a mode of distributing information. In fact the internet is the fastest growing WAN in the world, and its size keeps growing each and every single day. Today we seek out information on the internet rummaging through bits and pieces trying to find what you need. Wouldn't it be cool if we could instead get this information to reach you, instead of you looking for it? This is where the future of the internet lays people, where wireless technology will take over most of our daily lives. Even today we see a mild form of this by getting stock quotes and sms messaging on cell-phones. The future shows great promise for this immerging technology.The main two competitors to wireless networking are Bluetooth and devices based on the IEEE 802.11 standard. Before I go into detail on the products we're featuring today, I though it's best to take an insight look into most of the issues we need to look at when considering wireless technology. First off lets see what Bluetooth technology is all about.Bluetooth TechnologyTaking a small history lesson, Bluetooth was invented very recently, in fact it was in 1994 by L.M. Erricson. Where does the name come from? Well Bluetooth is named after a king of Denmark called H. Blaatand "Bluetooth" II. God knows why he got a name as such, but that's not important :-)I know most of you have heard of the word Bluetooth, but how many of you know what this technology is all about? In short Bluetooth wireless technology is an open specification for short-range wireless communication between electronic devices. When I meant electronic devices what I mean is that any device, be it a mobile phone, PC, Microwave, etc.., any of these devices will be able to communicate with each other if they are Bluetooth enabled. However the openness and versatility of this technology calls for very high levels of compatibility and interaction between devices and producers worldwide in order to make sure the exact standards are maintained.Today we see an ever increasing demand for networking devices. Not only at work, even most home users having more than one PC tend to network their machines. However this increasing demand requires manufactures to come up with cheap, simple and networks that are easy to maintain in order to capture the hearts and minds of non-technical folk.One of Bluetooth's main strength is its ability to simultaneously handle both data and voice transmissions. As a result manufactures are able to come up with innovative solutions such as mobile hands-free headsets, print to fax capability, and automatically synchronizing PDA, laptop, and other electronic devices.
Wireless connectivity over BluetoothBluetooth offers a very low cost, low power consuming solution to communicate with fixed or portable electronic devices as shown above. The Bluetooth standard defines a rigid structure for a wide range of devices to communicate with each other, with minimal or no user intervention. As the above figure shows, Bluetooth also offers wireless access LANs, mobile phone networks, the internet and almost any other Bluetooth enabled device in a household.The real cool fact about Bluetooth devices is that they're made under very strict standardizations. As a result any Bluetooth device in the world can connect to other Bluetooth devices in its proximity irrespective of the brandAll Bluetooth enabled devices operate in the unlicensed 2.4 GHz radio spectrum, which ensured worldwide compatibility.Bluetooth applicationsThere are many applications which have been proposed for Bluetooth devices. Some of the most popular ones are the Wireless headsets for mobile devices. The head sets will allow access to user's mobile phone even while the device is in the user's pocket. It's a total hands free solution. A similar device has been planned for car users as well, where they could access their phones without letting their hands off the wheel. Then there's the automatic synchronizer which they say will automatically synchronize a user's PDA, laptop and mobile phone when a change/update is made in one device.There are many more proposed applications in home automation, testing devices in a manufacturing line with a wireless handheld device while walking through and many more such as network access in public places and so on, which tells us what a potential this Bluetooth technology really has.