Home' LAPTOP Magazine : February 2012 Contents think smartphones, notebooks, and tablets—that
can receive and share Bluetooth signals from such
accessories as speakers, headphones, fitness ac-
cessories, and even medical tools such as heart-rate
monitors and electronic thermometers. Think of
Bluetooth Smart Ready devices as a mothership,
waiting to send and receive data from smaller
drone ships around it.
What is Bluetooth Smart?
Using that analogy, the drone ships are Bluetooth
Smart devices. These peripherals connect to
Bluetooth Smart Ready smartphones, tablets,
and notebooks. Bluetooth Smart gadgets can
also remain paired with Smart Ready devices even
when they’re not used for hours or days at a time.
Thanks to Bluetooth 4.0 ’s emphasis on wake and
sleep modes, Smart peripherals that aren’t in use
can remain in sleep mode indefinitely; they can
also wake from that sleep mode in an instant,
paired and ready to share data with a Smart Ready
tablet, notebook, or smartphone.
For instance, a heart monitor can be worn
for hours yet only send data to a Smart Ready
smartphone when a heart rate reaches a certain
number of beats per minute during exercise. Like-
wise, a wireless thermometer can remain paired
for days, but it will send temperature readings to
a notebook only when that device is used to take
a child’s temperature.
Does Bluetooth 4.0 make existing
Bluetooth products obsolete?
Newer laptops, phones, and slates with Bluetooth
Smart Ready radios built in will work with previous-
generation Bluetooth peripherals. Essentially, if
you have a Bluetooth Smart Ready smartphone or
notebook, you can still use it to stream podcasts
to your Bluetooth 3.0 wireless speaker system
or headphones. So no need to throw out those
headsets or portable speakers.
On the other hand, Bluetooth Smart peripherals
only work with a Smart Ready counterpart. So if
you want to take advantage of Bluetooth 4.0 ’s
new low-power capabilities, get ready to go
shopping—you’ll need a new Bluetooth Smart
Ready phone, computer, or tablet in addition to
a Bluetooth Smart accessory or peripheral.
What products are available with
As of press time, the Apple MacBook Air and the Mac
Mini desktop were the only Bluetooth Smart Ready
computers. Compatible smartphones include the
Motorola Droid RAZR and the Apple iPhone 4S.
Some Bluetooth Smart peripherals include the
MotoACTV fitness tracker and music player, as well
as an exercise heart-rate monitor from fitness gadget
manufacturer Dayton Industrial. The Bluetooth
SIG expects nearly every new smartphone and
notebook shipping this year to include a Smart
The Bluetooth SIG told us that many Bluetooth Smart
peripherals will be released in 2012, including
wireless 3D glasses, home entertainment remote
controls, and medical devices. The Bluetooth SIG
also hopes to see Bluetooth expand into ovens,
refrigerators, thermostats, and lighting systems.
If that happens, dimming the lights or checking
on the turkey could be a simple matter of using
an app on your phone.
Laptop | February 2012
UPGRADES & tiPS
❶ GEt Fit AnD Rock oUt At thE SAmE timE
The MotoACTV(starting at $249; www.motorola.com) is an
8GB or 16GB music player coupled with a GPS-enabled
fitness tracker à la the Apple Nike + iPod fit kit. Using
Bluetooth 4.0, the wearable device helps everyone
from couch potatoes to cardio freaks save favorite
routes, add new routines, and track the distance and
speed of workouts. For an added boost, the ACTV
can be paired with a set of low-energy Bluetooth
Smart headphones to take advantage of an intelligent
playlist manager that learns what tunes motivate you most.
See our review on p. 49.
❷ kEEP tRAck oF EvERythinG
With the Zomm Lifestyle Connect, you’ll never lose
anything again. This pocketable Bluetooth 4.0 hub
works with sticky Bluetooth Smart-enabled tags
that can be attached to anything—your wallet, your
keys, your smartphone, or even your car. When in
range, the tags send signals to the hub, which stores that contact as a last
known location and sends the data to a paired iOS or Android app. Lifestyle
Connect tags can also be set up to detect falls or other accidents and alert
medical emergency response if needed. Coming later this year.
❸ contRol yoUR homE
The Bluetooth Special Interest Group wants to wire homes with Bluetooth
Smart technology—including refrigerators, ovens, lighting systems, and
thermostats. Sometime this year, the SIG expects to see the technology
embedded in more products, giving users the ability to track food tempera-
tures in the refrigerator and freezer and adjust cool air in a living room from
a Bluetooth Smart Ready smartphone.
❹ Do A hEARt chEck
Want a faster way to check your heart rate? The Dayton Heart Strap can help.
The single-strap device can be worn under clothing during workouts or
general health checks to give a speedy heart reading. If used for
about an hour a day, the Bluetooth Smart device is estimated
to last one and a half years, thanks to low-energy Bluetooth
technology and a built-in coin cell battery.
3D-enabled notebooks such as the Toshiba Qosmio X775 and the Dell XPS
17 3D use battery-powered active-shutter glasses that flicker in sync with
a special display to stretch 2D video and games into the next dimension.
This year the Bluetooth SIG plans to build Bluetooth Smart into 3D shades,
giving users an alternative that could power the glasses longer than exist-
ing battery options.
FivE thinGS yoU cAn Do With BlUEtooth 4.0
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