Bluetooth 5 will bring higher speeds, better range and a focus on IoT

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The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) gave the green light to Bluetooth 5 this week, a new spec that promises some pretty radicular performance enhancements over its predecessor, according to the organization.

The latest version of the ubiquitous wireless technology is said to offer twice the speed, four times the range and eight times the capacity for broadcast messages. All of those bumps are firmly targeted at Bluetooth’s increase importance as a standard for the connected home. The update also includes some fixes designed to limit its interference with other wireless technologies.

Audio looks to be less of a focus this time out – a bit surprising, perhaps, given that smartphone manufactures are rapidly pushing wireless headphone adoption by accelerating the death of the standard jack on devices like the iPhone 7. This spec, however is all about the internet of things. According to the official release, “Bluetooth continues to embrace technological advancements and push the unlimited potential of the IoT.”

This week’s adoption means we can expect to start seeing the first Bluetooth 5 devices within the next two to six months, according to the organization.

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