Bluetooth 5.0: All you need to know

by August 26, 2019 0 comments

Bluetooth represents a standard for wireless technology that allows devices to exchange data over short distances using short-wavelength UHF radio waves in the industrial, scientific and medical radio bands, from 2.400 to 2.485 GHz, and building personal area networks (PANs). The wireless standard is managed by the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG), which now has over 35,000 member companies specialised in the areas of telecommunication, computing, networking, and consumer electronics.

The Bluetooth 5.0 is the latest version of the Bluetooth wireless communication standard and is majorly designed for wireless headphones, wireless earbuds, wireless keyboards and game controllers. The technology is also harnessed in communication between smart home and Internet of Things (IoT) devices. A few smartphones using Bluetooth 5.0 standard are iPhone 8, iPhone X series, Samsung Galaxy S8, etc. Here is what new in the Bluetooth 5.0.

While the Bluetooth 5.0 is an improved version over the previous generations of Bluetooth standards, however, you will only be able to feel the difference when you use it with compatible devices. What it means is, you will hardly see any major difference if you have a smartphone with Bluetooth 5.0, but all your Bluetooth accessories are designed with an older generation. And since, the wireless standard is backward compatible, you however can continue using your existing Bluetooth 4.2 and older devices with a Bluetooth 5.0 phone.

Bluetooth 5.0 also doubles the speed (2 Mbit/s burst) at the expense of range, or up to fourfold the range at the expense of data rate. This is beneficial to Internet of Things devices, wherein many nodes connect throughout a whole house. Another interesting feature of Bluetooth 5.0 is dual audio, which allows you to play audio on two connected devices at the same time. To put it simply, you could stream audio to two pairs of wireless headphones connected which are connected to your phone at once. Or you can also play audio on two different speakers in different rooms.

The major areas of improvement of Bluetooth 5.0 over Bluetooth 4.1 are slot availability mask (SAM), 2 Mbit/s PHY for LE, LE Long Range, high duty cycle non-connectable advertising, LE advertising extensions, LE channel selection algorithm.

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