Once the technology is made available through consumer devices, users will be able to transfer large data files by pairing Bluetooth with Wi-Fi.
Bluetooth wireless transfer of large-format multimedia content may soon get faster by pairing it up with Wi-Fi technology.
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) is developing a new method of radio substitution that will allow Bluetooth-enabled consumer devices to jump on top of the already present 802.11 radio, to send bulky entertainment data, faster.
Simply put, once the technology is made available through consumer devices, users will be able to transfer large data files by pairing Bluetooth with Wi-Fi.
Using new architecture called "Alternate MAC/PHY", users can expect to move their entertainment data, including music libraries, photos, and videos between their own devices and the trusted devices of friends, without the need for cables and wires.
Meanwhile, Bluetooth devices will continue to offer low power and secure connections.
According to Michael Foley (Ph.D.), executive director of the Bluetooth Special Interest Group, when the speed of 802.11 is overkill, the connection returns to normal operation on a Bluetooth radio for optimal power management and performance.
Currently, the fastest data rate Bluetooth can manage is about 3Mb per sec, which is of slower magnitude as compared to Wi-fi.
A fast transfer channel for Bluetooth using a different radio technology, ultra-wideband, was announced in 2006, but delays in getting it to work prompted the Bluetooth SIG to look at Wi-Fi too, Foley said.
Presently, there are some products like laptops that already combine the two technologies, though they work off separate chips. However, single chips combining the two technologies are still under development.
The core specification enabling the new architecture is expected to be published to members in mid-2009.