Nokia propose new mobile wireless standard to rival Buetooth

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Nokia are proposing to fast-track a new wireless standard for mobile devices and gadgets that’s ten times more energy-efficient than Bluetooth. Called Wibree (no clue as to pronunciation yet), it has been in development for 5 years and Nokia now want to standardise it and roll it out to other manufacturers.

“Our aim is to establish an industry standard faster than ever before by offering an inter-operable solution that can be commercialised and incorporated into products as quickly as possible,” said Bob Iannucci of Nokia Research.

The key advantages of Wibree over Bluetooth seem to be the lower power consumption and smaller chip. Data transfer rates are slower, at around 1Mbps, but this may not be an issue in some of the smaller applications Nokia are proposing the technology is used in, such as intelligent watches, health monitors and sport sensors.

Bluetooth has become a worldwide standard particularly in mobile devices, and analysts wonder if this new system can reach the same status. Do we have enough wireless standards already? Nokia seem to think not. It will also be interesting to see if Wibree stays a proprietary format or is released to be an open standard, as Ericsson did with Bluetooth in the early 1990s.

(Via BBC News)

Andy Merrett