Although Bluetooth technology has been around for a while, I am curious about the long-term usefulness and practicality in the computer and technology fields. In a December 1999 article, Heidi Monson described Bluetooth as " An eighteen wheeler screaming down the pike, carrying the future of computing with it." I have personally heard opinions from great excitement to general disgust for this technology. In this paper I will attempt to map its history, explain the concept, and describe its usefulness and limitations.
The first question for many people is "What is Bluetooth?" Bluetooth technology is named after Harold II "Bluetooth"; a Danish King that was famous for his traveling exploits and peacefully unifying Denmark and Norway. Bluetooth technology strives to incorporate these qualities into its product by making this technology globally compatible and it also has the ability to allow several different electronic devices to communicate effectively. Bluetooth technology was developed in 1994 by L. M. Erricson Telephone to integrate its phones with all Internet enabled devices. In order to have a device Bluetooth certified, to must pass testing by a Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) to ensure it will be able to interact with all other Bluetooth certified products. The founding members of this SIG were Ericsson, IBM, Intel, Nokia, and Toshiba. Shortly thereafter Motorola, Qualcomm, Compaq, Dell, Lucent, One2one, 3Com Palm, VLSI, Xircom, and Psion Dacom joined them. There have since been over 2000 other companies that have chosen to adopt Bluetooth. .
Bluetooth utilizes a 9mm x 9mm microchip, which functions as a radio link. It operates in the unrestricted, globally available 2.45GHz Industry Scientific and Medical (ISM) bandwidth with a range from 10cm to 10 meters; thus eliminating the line of sight restrictions of infrared devices. A planned version would increase the range up to 100 meters.