|The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) is the body that oversees the development of Bluetooth standards and the licensing of the Bluetooth technologies and trademarks to manufacturers.
Created in 1994, Bluetooth® technology was conceived as a wireless alternative to data cables by exchanging data using radio transmissions. The name Bluetooth came from a tenth century Danish King, Harald Blåtand or, in English, Harold Bluetooth. As the story goes, King Blåtand helped unite warring factions in parts of what are now Norway, Sweden and Denmark. Similarly, Bluetooth technology was created as an open standard to allow connectivity and collaboration between disparate products and industries.
One of the most popular applications for Bluetooth historically has been wireless audio—headsets and hands-free connectivity in cars to wireless speakers and headphones that stream music from your phone or tablet. This uses a version of Bluetooth called BR/EDR (bit rate/enhanced data rate) that is optimized for sending a steady stream of high quality data (i.e. music) in a power efficient way.
With the advent of Bluetooth with its low energy functionality (Bluetooth Smart or BLE), developers are now able to create small sensors that run off tiny coin-cell batteries for months, and in some cases, years. Many of these Bluetooth sensors use so little energy that developers are starting to find ways to use scavenged energy, like solar and kinetic, to power them—a potentially unlimited life from a power perspective. This allows you to find Bluetooth technology in billions of devices today, everything from phones to headsets to basketballs and socks—the use cases are limited only by a developer’s imagination.