Positioning of the technology is important when you consider other wireless technologies that share the same ISM band, e. g. IEEE802. 11b, HomeRF and DECT. Differentiation is key in avoiding confusion of potential users. Figure 3: Bluetooth SIG Administrative Structure In 1994, Ericsson Mobile Communications began to examine alternatives to cables linking accessories with their mobile phones. This study produced the initial specification for wireless technology, with the Bluetooth SIG founded in February 1998 by the core promoters:
Ericsson Mobile Communications AB. Intel Corp. IBM Corp. Toshiba Corp. Nokia Mobile Phones. The core promoters announced the global SIG in May 1998 and invited other companies to join as Bluetooth adopters. In July 1999 the core promoters published version 1. 0 of the specification and further enlarged the core promoter group in December 1998 with the inclusion of: ? Microsoft ? Lucent (now Agere) ? 3Com. ? Motorola. The responsibility for the various Bluetooth specifications is in the hands of the individual technical working groups.
Once a specification reaches a version level 0. 5 it is made visible to associate members. An associate members must be recommended by a promoter, and submit a fee. When a specification reaches version 1. 0 it gets a higher level of visibility. Now adopters have visibility and any company can become an adopter by joining the SIG, signing and submitting the membership agreement (see Bluetooth). The Bluetooth specifications are open specifications for wireless communications that are free to download and use; however to use it royalty free you do have to join the SIG.
By joining the group you sign up to an adopters agreement sharing any patents essential for implementing Bluetooth. The specifications define minimum functionality allowing devices from different companies to communicate (see Bluetooth). . They provide the following: o Protocol definitions for interoperability o Host controller interface o Bearer services for higher layer protocols o Profiles o Qualification o Production test o Brand book The Bluetooth specifications define the concept of a Personal Area Network (PAN), what they do not provide helps to position it in the ISM band.
It is not focussed on Wide Area Networking (WAN) as it has a limited range and currently there is no hand over mechanism, though there is a working group. They do not provide implementation instructions at the application programming interfaces, user interfaces or a definition of hardware and software split. Although it could be argued there is guidance in the profiles specification. The rest of this section breaks down the specifications encompassing the key aspects of Bluetooth in order to explain the features (see Bluetooth).