The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has confirmed the latest Bluetooth core specification version, finalizing Bluetooth 4.0. Set to be more power efficient than its previous iterations, Bluetooth 4.0 offeres 'low energy mode' and a boost in potential working range.
The new specification combines three actual specifications into one - Classic Bluetooth technology, Bluetooth low-energy technology, and Bluetooth High Speed technology - with an ability to be used as multiple or a single specification, in a device. The low-energy mode will allow its use in fields such as m-health, sports and fitness, security and home entertainment scenarios; where button-cell batteries are used extensively. The high-speed mode is supposed to be used in mobile phones and PCs, where power is less of a concern in comparison with the need of fast data transfer.
The oprating range of sustained connectivity has been increased with Bluetooth 4.0. As all the previous versions used to operate within a 30 feet (10 meter) radius, Bluetooth 4.0 will be able to connect with a device as far as or more than 200 feet (67 meter) apart from it.
Though we don't have many Bluetooth 3.0 devices avaiable but it is expected that Bluetooth 4.0 will be less of a paper release with actual products expected to hit the market in late 2010 or early 2011.