TI embraces ultra low-power Bluetooth

Texas Instruments will develop chips for low-power devices based on a new short-range wireless Bluetooth specification

Texas Instruments (TI) will develop chips for low-power devices based on a new short-range wireless Bluetooth specification.

The move comes on the heals of a decision by Nokia earlier this month to roll its low-power Wibree technology into the new ultra low-power (ULP) Bluetooth specification.

While Bluetooth has been used mostly to connect larger devices such as headsets, keyboards and mouses to stereos and PCs, the new ultra low-power specification aims to connect much smaller button-cell battery-powered devices, such as watches or sensors attached to a user's body. ULP Bluetooth uses the same 2.4GHz frequency as Bluetooth.

ULP Bluetooth will have a range up to 10 metres, similar to the Bluetooth Class 2 specification, which requires more energy. A button-cell battery powered device, equipped with the technology, will have an average operating life of one year and transmit data at a speed up to 1Mbps.

High-power Bluetooth Class 3 has a range up to 100m.

TI already produces chips for Bluetooth devices as well as devices based on the ZigBee ultra low-power specification.

The chipmaker views ULP Bluetooth and ZigBee as complementary technologies. ZigBee, for instance, is a mesh networking technology designed to support thousands of nodes with some restrictions on quality of service and latency, according to the ZigBee website. By comparison, ULP Bluetooth is an ad hoc networking technology that links a smaller number of nodes to devices with high quality of service and low latency.

TI will develop chips for both types of ULP Bluetooth implementations: a single-mode implementation for watches, sensors and other tiny devices to communicate with each other; and a dual-mode implementation to communicate with both single-mode and traditional Bluetooth devices, such as handsets.

Pricing and product availability details were not disclosed.

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

John Blau and Stephen Lawson

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?