Windows XP next year to have USB 2.0 and BlueTooth

Microsoft next year plans to update Windows XP to support two technologies left out of the new operating system: USB 2.0 and Bluetooth.

Both technologies are used for connecting peripherals to PCs, USB 2.0 at speeds up to 480 megabits per second (mbps) and Bluetooth over the air without wires. USB 2.0 support is expected early next year, and the Bluetooth addition should come by mid-2002.

Consumers craving USB 2.0 might not have to wait until the update is issued. Microsoft has released the "stack" for the connectivity standard to PC makers, which can immediately include it on new Windows XP-based PCs.

Gateway, for example, plans to begin shipping Windows XP PCs equipped with USB 2.0 the first week of January, a spokeswoman said.

"If they've got the devices and want to use our (USB 2.0) stack, they can start to do that in their computers," said Tom Laemell, Windows XP product manager.

"By early next year, that should be available by Windows Update to end users," he continued. "We need a little bit more time to package it up for Windows Update, to make sure it's run through all the possible test scenarios--on all possible Windows XP machines out there." Windows Update is Microsoft's online method for updating Windows.

News source: CNet News

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