Today, the Bluetooth SIG announced a series of improvements on the Bluetooth standard's "technology roadmap" in 2016 would offer enhanced range, speed, and mesh networking capability for the wireless communication protocol.
It's not clear if these changes will be part of a new standard (like Bluetooth 4.2 and beyond) or if there will be improvements applicable to older specs as well. In addition, we don't know if any of these improvements would require changes to the Bluetooth hardware itself, or whether both host and device must support the spec to see any kind of benefit. It's not even clear when we'll be able to expect devices with the improvements.
Always forgetting your phone? Well, you should probably pay more attention. Failing that, maybe get one of those Bluetooth tethers that can warn you when you're about to leave the phone behind. HTC makes one of those called the Fetch, and now there's an app in Google Play so more devices can get in on the fun.
The last time we heard from Lockitron the company was trying to sell a $300 smart deadbolt lock that you could open with NFC. This time Lockitron is taking a different, less expensive approach. The new device is mounted on top of your existing deadbolt, allowing you to control it without buying and installing a whole new lock. The product isn't quite ready to ship, but the company has a handy video demo ready to go.
The box is fairly easy to install on your door, and it runs on AA batteries that last for about a year. Inside are Bluetooth and Wi-Fi modules that are used to manage the lock remotely.
Perhaps you've just finally gotten your mobile devices all upgraded to the 802.11n Wi-Fi standard, and maybe Bluetooth 3.0 is enough to get you through the day. Qualcomm apparently has no intention of standing still, though. At Computex in Taiwan, Qualcomm has just demonstrated the first chip that will bring 802.11ac Wi-Fi and Bluetooth 4.0 to your next Android tablet. This is the chip first announced back in February, but now it's a real thing.
The Qualcomm Atheros WCN3680 will combine the 802.11ac Wi-Fi radio with Bluetooth 4.0 for low-power connectivity. To top it off, the chip will also have good old-fashioned FM radio.