Smart ideas RANGE & SPEED

Mac Format - - APPLE HOME -

Wi-Fi took a big step for­ward this month with the ar­rival of the first su­per­fast 802.11ad router, and now it looks like Blue­tooth is due for an up­date as well.

Blue­tooth pro­vides a quick and easy way of con­nect­ing just two de­vices at a time, such as your iPhone and speak­ers, or an Ap­ple Watch. It has quite lim­ited range, though, and its sig­nal is eas­ily blocked by walls and other ob­sta­cles, which can limit it to use within just a sin­gle room when you’re in­doors.

Blue­tooth 5, due at the start of 2017, could change all that. The tech­nol­ogy de­vel­op­ers at the Blue­tooth Spe­cial In­ter­est Group, or SIG, are keep­ing quiet about ex­act fig­ures, but they claim that Blue­tooth 5 “will quadru­ple the range, and dou­ble the speed” of the cur­rent Blue­tooth 4 stan­dard. That will be great for many de­vices, not least fu­ture sport watches and sen­sors like those we’ve looked at this month, and it’ll give you more free­dom to move around while us­ing your de­vices at home or in the great out­doors.

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