Bluetooth chews on future plans

A new version of the Bluetooth wireless specification and a three-year plan for more updates have backers hoping the technology will finally take off in the U.S. market.

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group, a trade group based in Overland Park, Kan., on Monday published a road map through 2006 for its technology that lets computer peripherals, cell phones and other devices communicate wirelessly over short distances. The group also updated the specification to trim power consumption and facilitate multitasking.

"Bluetooth has seen great adoption in Europe, though it is still lagging in the United States," said Anders Edlund, marketing director of the Bluetooth SIG. "I think today's update will help quite a bit in the U.S. And the road map is confirmation that Bluetooth has a long-term plan and the technology will continue to evolve," he said. Analysts attribute Bluetooth's European success to its penetration in the cell phone market there. Cell phone owners face strict laws against driving while holding a phone, and Bluetooth lets cell phones and car phones communicate wirelessly with headsets.

News source: C|Net News.com

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