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Poll: This Is Bluetooth's Year

Bluetooth technology could be about to come of age this year, according to the results of an Unstrung poll, Bluetooth: Necessity or Luxury?. The results indicate a surge of interest among users in the short-range wireless technology -- and an expectation that vendors will respond by integrating Bluetooth in a lot more wireless appliances such as phones and PDAs.

More than 200 readers have already taken the poll, which can still be taken by clicking here.

The votes cast so far show that:

  • 61 percent of respondents expect to use Bluetooth in 2003. This compares with 45 percent who used it in 2002 -- a 33 percent increase.

  • 39 percent of Unstrung readers consider Bluetooth to be a "must-have" on their wireless devices. A further 27 percent see it as important but not enough to sway a purchase decision.

  • 44 percent of respondents say Bluetooth will be integrated into every wireless device within a few years, while 12 percent think it will remain a niche technology.

  • Wireless LAN and Bluetooth will coexist in blissful harmony, according to 56 percent of respondents, while only 10 percent see them going head-to-head in a battle for short-range control.

  • Interoperability issues have been a hindrance, but they have always been regarded as surmountable, say 32 percent, while 18 percent are unaware of the problems.

    The results will change as more people take the poll, so add your vote here and check out the current results.

    In case you're not au fait with Bluetooth, it is a wireless technology designed as a cable replacement technology that enables users to connect devices such as personal digital assistants (PDAs), mobile phones, and laptops on the fly. It is based around a wireless radio chipset that runs over the 2.4GHz band. Bluetooth has a range of up to 30 feet and transfers data over the air at speeds of up to 720 kbit/s.

    — Ray Le Maistre, European Editor, Unstrung
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