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Bluetooth 4.0 devices support low-energy apps

Posted: 16 Dec 2010     Print Version  Bookmark and Share

Keywords:SoC  Bluetooth  wireless 

Atheros Communication Inc. rolls out two Bluetooth 4.0 devices—the AR3002, an SoC for mobile phones, tablets, smartbooks and other portable consumer electronics, and the AR3012 for notebooks, netbooks, desktops and all-in-one PCs.

Atheros said the chips support classic, high-speed and low-energy Bluetooth technologies to enable "robust" wireless connections between legacy Bluetooth products, as well as operate with devices such as low-power sensors in wristwatches, home control systems and other devices.

They are equipped with a configurable Class 1.5 power amplifier to allow manufacturers to customise output power (up to +10dBm) based on the characteristics of each device.

Atheros uses the GNU/Linux BlueZ architecture for its Bluetooth host stack, and has added key features to support the latest low-energy Bluetooth applications. Atheros and the Bluetooth SIG are said to be developing an open API to enable the development and deployment of low-energy applications.

Atheros' latest Bluetooth solutions also reduce power consumption to minimise battery drain in PCs and mobile devices. Since Bluetooth radios spend most of their time in idle mode, Atheros says it has cut the AR3012′s USB suspend current to reduce total power consumption by up to 50 per cent compared to other solutions. The AR3002 also utilises advanced encoding/decoding features to cut power consumption by up to 20 per cent for mobile devices.

The AR3002 and AR3012 Bluetooth solutions are now sampling, and are expected to be in volume production in Q1 2011.

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