We have adopted several tools to assist us in staying in touch with our friends and family as our world has become digitalized. Bluetooth technology, which can be found in many of the smart products we use every day, is one of the most widespread.
Our phones connect to our cars via wireless technology to listen to the latest podcasts. Our smartwatches connect to our smartphones via wireless technology.
In its most basic form, Bluetooth is a technology that allows data to be exchanged between devices over a short distance. Let’s see what Bluetooth is exactly and how does it work?
What is Bluetooth?
We have all grown accustomed to wireless technology, even if we aren’t constantly aware of it. Radio receivers and televisions pick up broadcasts sent hundreds (perhaps thousands) of kilometers across the air on radio waves.
Cordless phones employ comparable technologies to transport calls from a handset to a base station in your house.
When you are using wireless Internet, your system sends and receives a regular stream of User data to/from routers that are most likely connected to the Internet directly.
All of these technologies rely on radio waves zipping invisibly through the air to send and receive data rather than copper connections.
Bluetooth is a comparable radio-wave technology, although it’s primarily intended for short-range communication less than 10 meters or 30 feet, and no amount of troubleshooting can help you if you go beyond it. However, your Bluetooth version can impact the quality of your connection massively.
Typical applications include downloading pictures from a digital camera to a computer, connecting a wireless mouse to a laptop, connecting a headset to your smartphone so you can communicate while driving securely, and so forth.
This type of electronic device has built-in Bluetooth transmitters and receivers that allow it to send and receive wireless signals from other Bluetooth devices at the same time. Plug-in adapters can be used to convert older devices to function with Bluetooth in the form of USB sticks.
How Bluetooth Works?
The unlicensed ISM band centered at 2.4 gigahertz is used by the Bluetooth RF transceiver or physical layer. It is the same range of frequencies used by Wireless internet and microwave.
To counteract Bluetooth interference and fading, the main system uses a frequency-hopping transceiver.
Bluetooth uses a spectrum of 79 different frequencies (channels) centered on 2.45 GHz, which is distinct from radio, television, and telephones.
They consume almost no power and are potentially more secure than wireless networks that operate over larger distances, such as Wi-Fi because they don’t go as far.
Bluetooth devices recognize and connect to one another automatically, and up to eight of them can interact at once. Because each pair of devices uses a separate one of the 79 available channels, they don’t interfere with one another.
If two devices want to communicate, they choose a channel at random and switch to one of the others if that is already occupied. This technique is called spread-spectrum frequency hopping.
Pairs of devices constantly alter the frequency they use hundreds of times per second to reduce the possibility of interference from other electrical equipment and to improve security.
When two or more Bluetooth devices share information, they establish a piconet, which is an Adhoc, small computer connection. At any time, other devices can join or leave an active piconet.
One specific device serves as the network’s overarching controller, while the others follow its commands. A scatternet is formed when two or more distinct piconets link together and share information.
Manufacturers can alter the Bluetooth settings on their devices to reach the range they require while maximizing battery life and providing the highest signal quality. Bluetooth technology is very flexible and can be tuned to the needs of the application.
These are some of the factors that affect Bluetooth range.
- Radio Spectrum: The frequency band of Bluetooth technology makes it a viable choice for wireless communication.
- Physical layer (PHY): This defines certain fundamental features of how the radio transmits and receives data, such as data rate, error detection and correction, interference protection, and other techniques that influence signal clarity over various ranges.
- Receiver sensitivity: It is the lowest signal strength at which a receiver can still receive and decode data accurately.
- Transmission power: As you may assume, the higher the signal strength delivered, the greater the range that can be obtained. However, raising the transmission power will empty your battery more quickly.
- Antenna gain: It is the process of converting electrical impulses from the transmitter to radio waves and then back to electrical signals on the receiving end.
- Path loss: Distance, humidity, and the medium through which the signal travels are all factors that can diminish the signal, such as wood, concrete, or metal.
Is Bluetooth Better than Wi-Fi?
Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are commonly mistaken since they appear to do the same thing at first glance, at least to people that are not technology enthusiasts. In reality, they’re diametrically opposed.
Bluetooth is mostly used to connect computers (You can easily turn it on Windows 10) and electronic gadgets over short distances in an Adhoc manner, sometimes for just quick or infrequent communication utilizing low amounts of data.
Wi-Fi is meant to transport substantially bigger volumes of data across long distances between computers and the Internet. It’s fairly secure, consumes minimal power, and connects on its own. It can include more complex security and, in general, far greater power.
Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are complementary rather than competing technologies. You can easily combine the two to make your electrical devices function more efficiently for you.
Bluetooth has always been a bit annoying to use like any wireless technology. It drains your phone’s battery; you can easily step out of range, making communication irregular or impossible. Getting two Bluetooth devices to talk to each other in the first place isn’t always as straightforward as it can be.
As we advance toward the so-called Internet of Things, where all types of devices become connected to the Internet, the world of mobile devices is changing, Bluetooth must evolve to keep up.
Bluetooth engineers are constantly improving versions in response to the requirement to connect an expanding number of devices more swiftly and securely.
All of this complexity occurs without the user being aware of anything other than the task at hand, such as connecting devices and conversing hands-free or listening to high-quality stereo music on wireless headphones, as it does with any successful technology.