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Nokia's Wibree Takes on Bluetooth 120

narramissic writes "Nokia has developed a new, short-range wireless technology, called Wibree, that it says is a lot more power efficient than Bluetooth, which means it could be used in smaller and less costly devices. It can also use the same radio and antenna components as Bluetooth, helping keep costs down further. Wibree could compete with Bluetooth in the workplace as a way to link keyboards and other peripherals to computers. But it could also have more interesting applications for consumers, in devices such as wrist watches, toys and sports equipment." What does this say about Bluetooth, considering Nokia is a member of the Bluetooth Promoters group?
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Nokia's Wibree Takes on Bluetooth

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  • by Colin Smith ( 2679 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:27AM (#16291377)
    The network effect is cementing bluetooth in place. I can buy bluetooth keyboards, mice, earpieces already. OTOH, like Sony's memory stick, this may just be a way of locking dumb Nokia customers into a proprietary solution.

     
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by ne0nimda ( 866010 )

      But it could also have more interesting applications for consumers, in devices such as wrist watches, toys and sports equipment.

      SWEET! I can sync my wrist watch with my computer now? I've always thought that networking a watch to connect w/ my computer and transferring the time over was soooo much more efficient than using those little dials.

      Now imagine the new hacking vulnerabilities! Millions of corporate workers late; all of whome blame hackers for altering their alarm clocks!

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by TheRaven64 ( 641858 )
        You laugh, but I would find it useful for my watch alarm to be sync'd with events in my calendar. My mobile 'phone does this already, but I am more likely to have my watch with me than my mobile.
    • Seems bluetooth may have suffered from design by committee, ie too many conflicting requirements limiting its longevity.Whereas this oddly named contender is claimed not only to be much lower power (definitely a powerful factor in mobile tech) but also higher bandwidth and channel hopping, a la UWB. This, combined with the ability to reuse existing design of antennas etc, may well make it a winner.

    • Nokia is not a charity organization. It'll do lock ins if it's possible. Considering the amount of backstabbing that happens in wireless standardization, I'm not surprised Nokia is hiding this until the last moment and caught everyone by surprise. If this "proprietary solution" intending to lock "dumb users" actually works better than bluetooth, me and a million other people will buy it.

      I think bluetooth sucks. The best technology (like wlan) is there without me noticing it, but if it's not there, it's anno
  • by BadAnalogyGuy ( 945258 ) <BadAnalogyGuy@gmail.com> on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:28AM (#16291387)
    Sounds like they are trying to succeed in a non-existant market. The actual applications of Bluetooth are few and far between. The 'wireless' office never amounted to much and you know you look like an idiot with that earpiece and talking to yourself at Starbucks.

    So what is a company to do? How about rebrand the technology with a worse name than it originally had? That's the ticket!
    • by creimer ( 824291 )
      Nokia's has fallen under the influence of Nintendo's marketing department. Although it should be the Wiibre if they're going to name it correctly.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      Funny enough, one of the few clever (and relatively sucessful) application of bluetooth was an universal handfree kit for cars. BTW, we are talking about a phone manufacturer that tells us that soon, the devices they sell will do almost anything except voice calls, so I'm not that surprised.
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by bazorg ( 911295 )
      you know you look like an idiot with that earpiece and talking to yourself at Starbucks.The first time I visited a cold snowy place, a lot of people seemed comfortable about walking around with their hands in their pockets and using bluetooth headsets.
      • by R2.0 ( 532027 )
        And yet they still look like idiots. Go figure.
        • by Skreems ( 598317 )
          How stupid did people look when they first started using a handset? Most new technology looks odd until it's been around for a while.
          • by nasch ( 598556 )
            Besides, anybody who rejects a useful device because they're afraid they'll look stupid using it deserves to keep using the old tech.
    • by R2.0 ( 532027 )
      Can you send a memo to al of the dumbass OSS names out there? they don't seem to have gotten the message.
    • Sounds like they are trying to succeed in a non-existant market. The actual applications of Bluetooth are few and far between. The 'wireless' office never amounted to much and you know you look like an idiot with that earpiece and talking to yourself at Starbucks.

      Maybe in the US, but Bluetooth is pretty popular in Europe actually. It is very common for blue collar workers to have handsfree headsets for instance. Very handy to be able to talk to your colleagues on the roof and still have your hands free.
  • by Reality Master 201 ( 578873 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:28AM (#16291391) Journal
    Uh, that Nokia would rather sell a technloogy that's all their own than promote one they don't completely control?
    • by jspayne ( 98716 ) <jeff@nOspaM.paynesplace.com> on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:32AM (#16291437) Homepage
      Uh, that Nokia would rather sell a technloogy that's all their own than promote one they don't completely control?
      ...especially one that was originally developed by rival Ericsson, who is the #1 seller of Bluetooth chipsets?
      • ...especially one that was originally developed by rival Ericsson, who is the #1 seller of Bluetooth chipsets?

        If the new tech is compatable with bluetooth radios and antennas, how does this rage against the Ericsson machine?

        Further, I wonder if it's simply a matter of a software change on the hardware - which would make manufacturing of this stuff a no-brainer, and bluetooth receivers could quickly become dual-mode receivers.

        • I'm not totally sure here, but it's my understanding that the "chipset" may (depending on context) not include the radio.

          So saying that it uses the same radio as Bluetooth may not mean that it's just a drop-in software change; the chipset which actually decodes what the radio recieves and does useful things with it, may be totally different.

          I assume that the radios are basically off-the-shelf items; I'm sure you can go to any number of manufacturers and get them (Motorola, Analog Devices, National, etc.); t
      • by lawpoop ( 604919 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @12:17PM (#16292959) Homepage Journal
        I got modded down as 'troll' and 'offtopic' for stating this ealier [slashdot.org], but aside from the corporate competition, there is also the social/ethnic competition between Swedes and Finns. Actually, I think it is felt more by the Finns that they are in the shadow of Sweden. Sweden ruled Finland for a long time, and Sweden is wealthier than Finland, and Finns sort of have this complex about not being wholly Scandinavian.

        I am not just making this up. If you read the Finnish epic, which is said to characterize the finnish temperament, the hero Vainamoinen is actually an anti-hero. He is born old, never in his prime. One of the first stories about him is when he approaches a young bathing maiden and she runs away screaming. In the climax of the story, he rallies the troops to win back a magical device from a tribe of harpies, only to lose it in the sea during the epic battle. He's just not a winner.

        The parent I posed my original topic had said that 'a better tech had come along'. What a socially naive geek perspective. Sure, new things just drop out of the sky like clockwork. People are never motivated by petty social identies, like Ohio State vs. Michigan, US vs. Canada, MS vs. Apple, Ericsson vs. Nokia, or Finland vs. Swedend.

        So my votes goes for a Nokia vs. Ericsson, Finland vs. Sweden thing.
        • by lawpoop ( 604919 )
          Sorry, I missed a word: the name of the Finnish epic is the 'Kalevala'.
        • by caluml ( 551744 )
          And one other thing - language. Finnish is pretty much only spoken by them and Hungary. Swedish has commonalities with Danish and Norwegian, I'm lead to believe.
          So, if I had to learn either Swedish or Finnish, it'll be .se for me.
          • by lawpoop ( 604919 )
            To get a bit more specific, Finnish and Hungarian belong to the Finno-Ugric language family. Most of the rest of Europe speak languages in the Indo-European family.

            Hungarian and Finnish are mutually unintelligible. They look pretty dissimilar in written form. The closest language to Finnish is Estonian -- I'm not sure if Estonia is considered Europe. It was part of the Soviet Union; now it is independent and a member of the EU. Finns and Estonians can *basically* understand each other and the written lang
            • by ladoga ( 931420 )

              I think that the most commonly accepted theory is that the Finns are descendant from the Mongolian Huns who conquered a lot of Asia and Eastern Europe.

              Finnish has been spoken in finland atleast about 3000 years, long before Huns (which actually invaded middle and southern europe in 4th century, never scandinavia).

              If any "european" people would be related to Huns it would be Turks (which originate from same area in central asia). Together cooperating with Huns were also some southern fenno-ugric tribes (

        • by marsu_k ( 701360 )
          I don't deny the rivalry between Finns and Swedes (as a Finn, I have experienced it first hand many many times - I find it both immature and irritating, but these things don't change very quickly), but I don't think that plays any role in this. While Nokia has its headquaters in Finland (which they've threatened to move abroad several times when there have been discussions about raising some taxes and/or lowering others), it is a multinational corporation that doesn't have a national identity.

          Rather, I thin

  • by ocdude ( 932504 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:31AM (#16291423)
    While it's always cool to hear about new tech coming out, it makes me crazy when I hear about a new tech that is going to replace an "older" tech when the "older" tech hasn't even been around for too long. So, right now, I don't even own any bluetooth things. If this new Wibree thing starts to proliferate as much as bluetooth, does that mean that now I will have to monitor everything I buy to make sure that it works with my particular hardware? IE will I have to make sure my new laptop has both bluetooth (for "legacy devices) and wibree for whatever nokia throws at us?

    The same can be said about just about any new tech that is to replace and not be compatible with old tech. USB, IMHO, did it right. USB2.0 is backwards compatible with USB1.1

    • It's like they introduce new "standards" for the sake of having new standards, not because they address any particular problem. I have bluetooth crap all over the place (scanners, headsets, printers, telemetry nodes), and I have no intention of changing it all over. Much like anything that takes a Sony memory stick, it's just another reason to avoid certain vendors and products.
  • Nintendo? (Score:2, Funny)

    by pipatron ( 966506 )
    Nintendo Wiibree anyone?
  • It tell me that ... (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward
    ... there is going to be one more application in the ISM band. Not that it is overcrowded already, no.
  • Bluetooth 2.0? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by erroneus ( 253617 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:37AM (#16291515) Homepage
    Perhaps in the same way USB 2.0 emerged, Bluetooth 2.0 is due? Faster, lower power requirements, backward compatibility. Seems like the natural and sensible thing to do.
    • by skuzz03 ( 970606 )
      Bluetooth 2.0 has been around for a while...
    • Re:Bluetooth 2.0? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Andy Dodd ( 701 ) <{ude.llenroc} {ta} {7dta}> on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @11:05AM (#16291887) Homepage
      Been around for a while.

      Higher data rates, higher sound quality for headsets, error correction for headset audio (read: significantly increased range and quality).

      They still haven't fixed the compatibility nightmares of Bluetooth. God forbid you might want to use a Motorola headset with a Treo for example! It'll work, but barely, and most functionality (such as picking up a call from the headset) won't work.

      The state of Bluetooth stacks for Windows is even worse. Microsoft's stack doesn't seem to support anything other than the serial profile - no headset audio, no AD2P. Only 50% of the stacks available a few months ago supported headset audio, even fewer supported AD2P (high quality stereo audio). Every single Bluetooth stack insists on making the headset the default audio device for the entire system, which is useless (and incredibly annoying) when you only want to use it for a SIP/IAX softphone, Skype, Teamspeak, Ventrilo, or similar stuff. Last but not least, even though most Bluetooth stacks support the majority of hardware chipsets out there, every single one is locked to a specific device vendor. i.e. if you buy a Dell with a CSR chipset, it'll come with the Toshiba bluetooth stack (worthless since it puts all serial devices at COM40 or above which most apps don't support). The WIDCOMM stack works with CSR chipsets, but is locked to whatever vendor's CSR-based dongle you got the stack with. You can't even upgrade to a recent version in most cases. (Buy a dongle with a WIDCOMM 3.x stack, and you can't upgrade to 5.x legally).

      From what I've heard, both Microsoft and Logitech BT keyboards/mice don't work well unless you use the dongle and BT stack that came with the hardware - what's the point of being Bluetooth in that case?

      About the only Bluetooth device I've ever used that worked well is my GPS receiver. I've tried 3 different headsets with my Treo and 2-3 different BT stacks on my PC for use with those headsets and have never been satisfied with the results.
      • Hate to bring up the "it just works" thing but Bluetooth works fine on a Mac, with headsets or keyboards or whatever. All new macs come with Bluetooth 2.0 integrated already, and have since the Intel switch (plus a bit before that).

        • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
          Most of the bluetooth phones i've tried don't "just work" with a mac.
          • by aclarke ( 307017 )
            The only one I tried worked great, although it didn't "just work" in the usual Mac way. I had to do some non-standard setup for some of this but I used it as a wireless GPRS modem, synced via bluetooth, and had Salling Clicker [salling.com] installed giving me all sorts of fun goodies. It was an Ericsson something-or-other. I'm back to CDMA land now so I don't use it any more.

            Currently I use a Logitech bluetooth mouse which "just works", as well as an Apple bluetooth keyboard which "just works", as one would expect
            • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
              Mice and keyboards "just work" in Windows, too, as do phones once you go through the effort of installing software. The point is that there isn't a difference. I use a MS BT mouse with my MBP. It just worked just as it did with my Windows notebook.
          • Not sure what you've been using, but I've used a variety of Motorola phones and they all seem to "just work" fine. Address Book sync, Object transfer for photos and video ... getting it working as a data modem was a bit of a pain but 95% of that was T-Mobile's fault; the phone talked to the Mac from the first moment onwards without problems. The computer doesn't give me crap about using some crummy generic USB BT dongle, either. (Unlike Windows where I'd need to install vendor-supplied drivers.)

            Then again,
            • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
              Yep, Moto's have worked for me.

              "The computer doesn't give me crap about using some crummy generic USB BT dongle, either. (Unlike Windows where I'd need to install vendor-supplied drivers.)"

              I assume that's because you're using Apple's builtin BT? Fair comparison. Windows notebooks come with BT built in frequently as well. You don't get the problem you describe with those either.

              "Then again, the phone has also worked pretty well with my IBM laptop and its BT implementation, so maybe more credit is due to M
              • by Andy Dodd ( 701 )
                As I mentioned in my post, you DO get lots of problems with built-in Bluetooth depending on which stack the laptop vendor chose. It's all in the stack, and not the hardware for the most part.

                To my knowledge, both Apple and Dell use Cambridge Silicon Radio (CSR) chipsets. There is basically no difference between the two in terms of the BT hardware, and a large portion of the USB BT dongles out there (which use the exact same CSR hardware). In fact, in the case of Dell's Bluetooth modules (at least the 350
          • by Moofie ( 22272 )
            My Treo 650 works great with my Powerbook. Zero drama.
            • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
              Don't know in what way. The Treo 650 in particular is incompatible with address book standards due to it's categories tag. When I had a Treo 650 (which I gave up because it was so unstable) it would not work with Tiger out of the box. That may have changed at this point. More likely, you've installed the Palm software and use BT with that. When I owned both, in order to support the 650 on mac through mac's address book, you had to install the Palm software PLUS a 3rd party bridge--- hardly "it just wo
              • by Moofie ( 22272 )
                Hmm. I happen to use the Missing Sync software, which adds some handy features, but before I installed that, I was able to sync with iCal and Address Book without a problem. I don't know if categories are supported out of the box, but it did work fine.

                I don't believe address book synchronization is part of the Bluetooth standard, so I definitely agree with you that compatibility is an issue. However, it's not an issue with Bluetooth.
                • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
                  Did you also install Palm Sync first?

                  Yes, Missing Sync is the software but it isn't part of OS X and the claim was that BT "just worked" with a mac. That is not true for cell phones. Some do work, Moto and some SE in my experience, and address sync *should* be part of that. Ideally, you should be able to sync *any* BT cell phone address book to mac and then back to any other cell phone. That most definitely does not work. It doesn't work in Windows either, but then again Windows isn't the one that adve
                  • by Moofie ( 22272 )
                    "Did you also install Palm Sync first?"

                    Nope. iSync in Tiger doesn't need a separate conduit, although it used to. Having said that, I don't necessarily understand why installing drivers/software for a phone would not be a part of a reasonable "what is necessary to make it work" rigamarole.

                    I mean, if I want to use a printer, I have to install drivers, right? Some drivers are bundled with the OS, some are not. Not a big deal.

                    "Ever tried syncing a WM5 phone to OS X?" Eww. No. Why?
                    • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
                      "Having said that, I don't necessarily understand why installing drivers/software for a phone would not be a part of a reasonable "what is necessary to make it work" rigamarole."

                      I think it is reasonable, yet mac people like to make a point of "it just works". If you install phone drivers on Windows then "it just works" too. Getting phones supported in Windows and OS X requires basically the same effort and that was my point. I think integrated PIM apps and iSync is a great feature of OS X but I'd like to
                    • by Moofie ( 22272 )
                      "yet mac people like to make a point of "it just works"."

                      Uh, OK. Like I said, sometimes the drivers are bundled, sometimes they're not. Where do you find drivers for syncing say, a Sony Ericsson phone with Windows?

                      "I'd like to see more stuff work out of the box."

                      Well, sure. But you're not seriously trying to say that OS X's syncing system is the same as Windows', are you? Because that'd be pretty silly.

                      "phones besides that they all suck is that none are supported by OS X"

                      Huh. My perspective is differen
                    • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
                      "Uh, OK. Like I said, sometimes the drivers are bundled, sometimes they're not. Where do you find drivers for syncing say, a Sony Ericsson phone with Windows?"

                      If what you're saying is that OS X is better than Windows for cell phone because a small number of phones are supported out of the box, that's pretty weak argument. Neither system meets the needs of the typical user without 3rd party software. With 3rd party software they are essentially the same except that Windows supports more phones overall than
                    • by Moofie ( 22272 )
                      "If what you're saying is that OS X is better than Windows for cell phone because a small number of phones are supported out of the box,"

                      Mmmmmkay. I don't recall ever saying that, but whatever floats your boat.

                      "Apple themselves say that the Treo 650 requires the purchase of mark/space software in order to be supported my Tiger"

                      Mmmmmkay. Worked fine for me, before installing MarkSpace. It works BETTER with MarkSpace, which is why I bought it, but it works adequately...right out of the box. Or you could in
                    • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
                      "Mmmmmkay. I don't recall ever saying that, but whatever floats your boat."

                      And I wasn't saying OS X and Windows were the same, either, but whatever floats your boat.
                      I'm glad you're not saying that. Just what, then, makes OS X superior to Windows for cell phones then?

                      "Worked fine for me, before installing MarkSpace."

                      OK. It didn't work fine for me nor does it for Apple. That's why Apple says it doesn't work and I know precisely why. Palm changed the interface to their syncing to support certain enhancement
                    • by Moofie ( 22272 )
                      "Just what, then, makes OS X superior to Windows for cell phones then?"

                      OK, that wasn't my initial contention, but whatever. I just don't happen to think that the problems of syncing phones is a Bluetooth specific issue. The interconnection works, the software support just isn't there. In my personal experience, the software support is better on OSX than on Windows, but you seem to have a different opinion, which is great.

                      "Perhaps you haven't had to deal with the hourly or minute-by-minute resets with the
                    • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
                      "...I just don't happen to think that the problems of syncing phones is a Bluetooth specific issue."

                      I'm not an expert on BT but I think it's complicated. BT defines device profiles which are very specific things. If the profiles are sufficient and are supported properly on both sides, then it works. Because of that, I think it may be a BT-specific issue but I don't know.

                      "In my personal experience, the software support is better on OSX than on Windows,..."

                      Actually, I think I do agree with you regarding BT
          • My last three 'phones have been an Ericsson T68, a Sony Ericsson T610 and a Nokia N70. All of these have sync'd with iCal and Address Book correctly, they have allowed me to transfer files between the Mac and 'phone easily via Bluetooth and have functioned as a wireless modem over Bluetooth with minimal configuration.

            Perhaps you could be more specific?

            • by dfghjk ( 711126 )
              My Nokia E61, Treo 650 and my WM5 phone (Tmobile MDA) have all not worked. My SE's and Moto's have.

              I think it's well known that cell phones are problematic. If they weren't, Apple wouldn't feel the need to enumerate the ones that were supported.

              http://www.apple.com/macosx/features/isync/devices .html [apple.com]

              BTW, this is not a list of BT supported phones, it's a list of ALL supported phones. Some don't work with BT. Not a very big list is it?
        • by s4ck ( 895807 )
          Hate to bring this up but the bluetooth on the iMac has been nothing but nightmares. the mouse and keyboard bluetooth is riddle with problems. after too many phone calls to apple support and hardware exchange i switched to whole damn thing to good old usb cable...

          now THAT works.

          • I'm not sure why you were having problems, I use only bluetooth mice/keyboards with a Mac and have not had a problem for months - that includes turning them off and on with great regularity, so it's not like the connection is constant and easy to maintain.
        • Also Mac has known problems with supporting AD2P (audio over bluetooth).

          Not flaming the Mac as I own one but their bluetooth support is not much better than Windows.
        • Well you can't really say "switch to a mac" to millions of windows users if they want to use bluetooth, no? It's obvious that it's not mac is better than windows, but it's bluetooth that sucks.

          I think in any wireless technology (802.11, bluetooth) we see a fine example of corporate greed, backstabbing & "screw the customer" mentality in its purest form.
          • Well you can't really say "switch to a mac" to millions of windows users if they want to use bluetooth, no?

            Why not? They could still run Windows.

            It's obvious that it's not mac is better than windows, but it's bluetooth that sucks.

            If the only place Bluetooth falters is in fact on Widnows, I think you can draw your own conclusions about the origins of the sucking.

            If 100 million people use the same brand of vaccuum cleaner, it doesn't mean that wouldn't suck either. In probabalistic terms were talking indepe
    • There already is a Bluetooth 2.0, and beyond that, there is an Enhanced Data Rate(EDR) expansion that improves bandwidth speeds. I'm curious how effecient the Nokia solution will be, as bluetooth chips are getting more and more power friendly. I bought a Plantronics 645 with DSP (bluetooth headset) recently, and this thing gives me several days of standby time and at the very least 7-8 hours of talk time. I end up charging it like twice per week... if it could be moved down to "once" per week, that would be
  • Doesn't say much (Score:3, Interesting)

    by AlastairMurray ( 537904 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:40AM (#16291543)

    From the summary:

    "What does this say about Bluetooth, considering Nokia is a member of the Bluetooth Promoters group?"

    It says that Bluetooth is years old and now some that is (possibly) better has come along, nothing more.

    • I agree - unlike our neighbor the troll (trolls are of course Norse...) I don't see this as any silly Scandinavian rivalry; technology companies are always working on the next generation of technology, except when they're trying to kill it because it's interfering with what they currently sell, and even then they're usually still working on the next generation. Bluetooth had lots of things wrong with it - it was supposed to use very low power and cost very little, but never really performed on those goals;
  • What does this say about Bluetooth

    It says that the stupid Trademarkable Name(TM) thing wasn't a one off, and we can expect all future networking interfaces to have some stupid name in the future. Not only will that be insanely annoying, but it will allow companies to collect royalties to be able to claim compatability with 'open' protocols indefinatly. Yes, technology companies have finally found a direct revenue way to exploit the previously harmless trademark laws, and to bypass that pesky patent term len
  • by RedDirt ( 3122 ) * on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:52AM (#16291705) Homepage
    One can only hope they've invested more time in securing the communications channel than in Bluetooth. Bluesnarfing [wikipedia.org] for the win! Or something. =/
  • Wibree vs ZigBee? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by uss_valiant ( 760602 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @10:55AM (#16291741) Homepage
    From TFA:
    Wibree isn't the only contender for use in wireless sensors, however. Zigbee is an ongoing standardization project and has similar characteristics to Wibree.
    I know BT and ZigBee [zigbee.org] (about ZigBee [wikipedia.org]), but never heard about Wibree. I'm pretty disappointed that Nokia wants to go with this proprietary approach.
    Anyway, there's a lot going on in IEEE 802.15 (Personal Area Network) [wikipedia.org].
  • I have a Nokia phone, and it has Bluetooth.

    When I bought the phone, I also bought a Bluetooth headset. I gave up on the Bluetooth pretty quickly: The headset would only run for about five hours before needing to be recharged, and the phone's standby time was cut down massively.

    This isn't a complaint about Bluetooth as such. It's more that current devices, as delivered, don't provide long-enough standby time, never mind talk time, when Bluetooth is enabled.
    • SOme nokia handsets/headsets keep the bluetooth connection on continously. This was a major complaint about the Nokias.

      Sony Ericssons tend to pulse/ping the connection, only turning on the full link when there is a call, giving far greater standby times.

      Again, its more a case of different devices doing different things. Each has its advantages and disadvantages
    • My SE T610 runs for 2-3 days in standby with BT on plus several short calls a day. But since I charge it nightly anyway, that's a non-issue. Phones that can't even standby a single day with BT on have a serious issue.
    • When I bought the phone, I also bought a Bluetooth headset. I gave up on the Bluetooth pretty quickly: The headset would only run for about five hours before needing to be recharged, and the phone's standby time was cut down massively.

      Not to mention you look like some kind of massive dork from a sci-fi movie and are usually perceived by the general public as talking to yourself.

      • I must confess that I am a little taken aback by the sight of people who seem to be having conversations with themselves.

        Nonetheless, I wanted to try it so I could have recordings of "Champs Elysees" (s French current affairs CD I get every month) play with the ability to interrupt on an incoming call. I thought Bluetooth is expensive in standby, then I tried using it to play MP3s. That was a power hog, let me tell you.
      • I'm a scizophrenic, hiding behind a bluetooth headset, you insensitive clod!
    • I've never used a Bluetooth headset, but I use Bluetooth regularly for a few things:
      • Syncing my address book with my computer.
      • Syncing my calendar with my computer so I can check appointments while mobile.
      • Connecting to the Internet from my laptop while I am mobile.
      • Transferring pictures from my 'phone to my computer.
      Activating Bluetooth doesn't have much of an effect on the standby time of my 'phone, although it was a bit worse on my last one.
  • Quoting, Wibree sensors could also be placed in a gold club and used to upload data to the Internet about a player's swing, again via a mobile phone, where a golf instructor could offer advice about improving his or her game.

    Would that gold club be an iron or a wood? Maybe its a putting club?

    Anyway, I guess any rich golfers that have a gold golf club won't mind the extra expense of a radio linked computer sensor... but it would spoil their boast of "My club is solid gold!".
  • by pablo_max ( 626328 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @11:17AM (#16292105)
    The main problems with Bluetooth in my mind are complexity and cost. Qualifying a Bluetooth chip is a major pain in the butt. You need to qualify the radio part, the stack and profiles separately depending on what kind of product you have. And speaking of profiles, there are something like 30 Bluetooth profiles. Most of which overlap! So often time when you are implementing one profile you also cover all the mandatory features of another so you have to claim that one as well since you are seen as using that profiles IP! It's crazy.
    Then there is the cost. 10k to list your product. If you want to add something to it after you listed it...10k please. Not to mention the testing. 30k please.
    Bluetooth was going to be less then 2 bucks per radio. It's still almost double that. The Bluetooth SIG is way out of control.
    IMO Nokia is smart to jump ship. However, they cant go it alone. If they were able to get Motorola on board and perhaps Samsung, I can see no reason why a lower cost alternative would not work. Assuming that data rates are there.
    • The main problems with Bluetooth in my mind are complexity and cost.

      In a cell phone, the main problem with BT is battery life. Simplified, a cellphone spends most of it's life in deep sleep mode, with all radios turned off. Every 1.28 second (google Slot Cycle Index) the phone wakes up and looks for a page. If it doesn't get one it goes back to sleep. The entire process takes 10-20 ms. When the radios are on the phone draws about 80 ma from the battery, when sleeping 1-5 ma (depending on the phone).

      B

  • Bluetooth 2? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Midnight Thunder ( 17205 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @11:17AM (#16292107) Homepage Journal
    Maybe they would have more luck trying to integrate this into the Bluetooth standard and proposing this as Bluetooth 2, ensuring that it stays compatible. While I understand Nokia trying to provide a new and improved technology, it needs to be done in a way not to confuse the already semi-confused buying public. By making it work with Bluetooth, in the same way as USB 1 and USB 2 or the B, G and A versions of the 802.11 standard.
    • by tao ( 10867 )

      Because making it backwards compatible with Bluetooth would have nullified the major gains of the new technology; lower cost, and lower power consumption...

      • If this new "Bluetooth killer" takes off, Nokia would be able to collect royalties on the products licensed, rather than just paying into the Bluetooth consortium like everyone else.

        If they named it Bluetooth 3.0 or whatever, they'd still have to license it through the consortium.

        - Jonathan
    • by maxume ( 22995 )
      B+g are compatible with each other, but not A. They often get packaged together, even on the same card, but you can't mix a+b or a+g on the same network the way you can with b+g.
    • No. Bluetooth needs to die a quick death. They're not kidding when they named it "Bluetooth special interest group", which is all they did, serve their own special interest. The amount of money that you have to spend to license bluetooth is enormous. This is why you see a bluetooth mouse cost 3x a regular wireless mouse, it's due to the licensing cost.

      Half of the people in here don't know bluetooth 2.0 has been out since 2004. Talk about confusion. If half of slashdot don't even know about it, forget about
      • Bluetooth is in really bad shape. It's expensive, hard to use, eats batteries and incompatible. Which is the exact opposite of what bluetooth supposed to be. This is due to their own greed, so let it die.

        Immediate solutions include reducing license costs and better marketing. Does Wibree solve any of the issues or is it just another nice sounding technology with the same limitations?

        BTW not sure what you meant by hard to use or incompatible. If you are talking about the Windows implementation then it sucks
  • That way everyone would want to upgrade.
    • Except they have bluetooth 2.0 (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bluetooth_2.0#Blueto oth_2.0) It's basically the same unless you have the EDR part in which case it uses two new modualations.
  • by Goeland86 ( 741690 ) <{goeland_86} {at} {yahoo.fr}> on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @11:48AM (#16292543)
    Having seen a few presentations about network standards, and especially wireless network standards, I think that Nokia is just trying to enhance the existing technology. Granted, there may not be a strong commercial gain to it, but the fact remains that bluetooth has been a more or less static protocol since its inception. Wifi on the other hand went through several revisions: 802.11a, b/g, now the upcoming n... There's a lot of development put into wifi. I attended a conference from Intel researchers saying they were working on enhancing the 802.11 protocol to work in a de-centralized manner, so I'm looking at this, and I'm thinking: well Wibre might just push Bluetooth further than it is. Using the same hardware base is also good, because it'll bring down manufacturing costs. I'm willing to bet we'll see the Bluetooth consortium jump on the bandwagon and help nokia widespread Wibre under a label like "Bluetooth 2.0" or something similar. Hardware and software updates all the time, why wouldn't protocols?
  • Wibreee vs UWB? (Score:2, Insightful)

    With Wireless USB http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wireless_USB [wikipedia.org] based on MB-OFDM on the way and backed by big names like Intel, I dont think it stands a chance. The days of proprietary technologies are over. Nobody wants to pay licensing fees anymore.
  • It says.. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by NekoXP ( 67564 ) on Tuesday October 03, 2006 @12:24PM (#16293077) Homepage
    That Bluetooth isn't cheap or power efficient enough for certain devices.

    That's about all :)

    Not that Bluetooth isn't good and that Nokia don't like promoting it or using it, but Bluetooth is not a panacea - just a standard.
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by mspohr ( 589790 )
      There is already a standard to take care of these issues (IEEE_802.15 and ZigBee) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.15 [wikipedia.org]

      We don't need another proprietary standard... it looks like Nokia is just trying to have some standard that they can own so we'll buy more of their stuff... time to run away from this.

      • by NekoXP ( 67564 )

        Firstly, there can't be one standard which fits all devices. It's impossible to define without creating a bunch of semi-compatible subsets which need bridging devices.. which would defeat the object of a standard for all.

        Secondly, Wibree is also Bluetooth compatible, but lower data rate, and lower range than the higher end protocols.

        Thirdly, ZigBee is for *extremely* low data rates and focussed on home automation.
        • by mspohr ( 589790 )
          The ZigBee is designed for very low power consumption and data rates up to 250 kbits/sec which is plenty for voice and even low res video.

          TFA states that Wibree requires "dual mode" chips to be compatible with Bluetooth... sounds like two different protocols on one chip. ZibBee also can use the 2.4 Gig band so I guess it is as "compatible" with Bluetooth as Wibree.

          It still looks to me that Nokia is trying to design a new proprietary standard and force it on the market so they can make big bucks from lice

          • It still looks to me that Nokia is trying to design a new proprietary standard and force it on the market so they can make big bucks from licensing.

            Which is what Ericsson did with Bluetooth, way back then. They even went to the trouble of passing it through IEEE as 802.15.1

            • by mspohr ( 589790 )
              My argument is that this is a completely redundant "standard" which is created for commercial purposes and which will cost consumers extra money (as they pay for devices that run the new standard).

              I'll all for innovation and I'm happy to see companies making money but there is no benefit to consumers here since the functionality can be addressed with the 802.15.1 through 5 devices. In this case Nokia will stuff the channel with this equipment and consumers will have to buy new peripherals, etc. I'd rath

          • by NekoXP ( 67564 )
            What's wrong with making money?

            If Wibree is dual-mode then it's not bad, is it? Nobody is going to lose Bluetooth on Wibree devices, in fact they are going to gain battery life. Which is good!!

            ZigBee using the 2.4Ghz band does not mean it is "compatible". Wibree is compatible in that it HAS Bluetooth functionality, not that it is going to further clutter the 2.4GHz band with more devices..
  • Another acronym to confuse users. Wich BTW still don't get that a BT device may not have the same services as another BT device. For example, a BT camera phone may let you use its camera as webcam while another one won't. But still both advertise as BT devices. Why do they/us let them do this??
  • I thought this was for Nintendo's new cheese-based controller. The WiiBrie.
  • Body area networking can and will succeed
    1. Bluetooth is used a lot more outside the US. Most US operators cripple bluetooth on the phones they sell. Try buying direct [nokiausa.com].
    2. Despite this, it is already the preferred method for phone sync, phone management, wireless keyboards and some mice, headsets, sending business cards and photos mobile to mobile and for using your phone as a modem to your laptop.
    Bluetooth is not perfect for lots of low power cheap devices
    1. Every bluetooth device sold requires payment
  • That it is software driving the radio most likely that makes the difference. That means a BT device can support Wibree in all likelyhood simultaneously. Just like the degradation of WiFi connection when a WiLAN has mixed 11 Mbps and 54 Mbps ... So keep the BT support for ahtw is there already and have a gentle migration through attrition.

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