The Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to reach over 20 billion devices in 2020. With so many different types of devices needing data services, actually gaining connectivity between devices and data hubs in an energy efficient manner can become a challenge. Well, it was a challenge, until now. Bluetooth 4.1 is set to release by the end of Q4 2014 and the new technology will allow users to directly connect to the cloud of their choice without the need to pair the Bluetooth device to mobile device such as a smartphone.
Previously, Bluetooth 4.0 connected devices would need to interact with a data hub of some sort. This could be represented as a tablet or even a laptop. With Bluetooth 4.0, devices would exclusively connect to mobile devices to report data from things such as wearable technology. Bluetooth 4.1 bypasses this requirement by allowing devices to directly connect to routers which will then redirect the data to into the cloud for instant analysis. One of the most obvious markets that can directly benefit from this technology is the fitness market. Imagine being able to wear a device that will tell you all about the analytics of your workout in real time without having to manipulate the data on a smartphone or tablet first. The data would go directly into a cloud service and personal trainers or health conscious individuals could base their workouts upon data gathered from this service.
Suke Jawanda is the Chief Marketing Officer for Bluetooth and he mentions, “It’s not only connecting sensors to phones, tablets or hubs, but in essence talking to infrastructure in bigger ways.” Jawanda goes on to talk about the power management features of Bluetooth 4.1. He says, “Bluetooth 4.1 uses smarter timing and technique for low-power data bursts, which can improve the battery life of devices.” Bluetooth 4.1 opens the door for more innovative cloud products to be developed. It also gives the current cloud-connected wearable device market a way to realistically compete as many of the questions surrounding this technology are answered with Bluetooth 4.1’s innovation.