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Nokia, the world’s top maker of mobile phones, has announced its new technology to that will be a cost-effective “complementation” for the Bluetooth standard. The company hopes that its WiBree will consume less power, will have lower cost and will become an industry standard quickly.

“Wibree technology is an important development that opens up new market opportunities and a whole new range of possibilities for mobile users. Our aim is to establish an industry standard faster than ever before by offering an interoperable solution that can be commercialized and incorporated into products quickly,” says Dr. Bob Iannucci, head of Nokia research center.

WiBree will allow transferring data at the speed of 1Mb/s in the range of 0 to 10 meters between compatible devices, according to Nokia. Besides, WiBree controllers will consume “only a fraction” of the power compared to similar technologies and is easier to integrate, the company explained. The company said that besides cellular phones and personal computers, WiBree may be integrated into small devices, such as watches, wireless keyboards, toys and sports sensors.

Nowadays many mobile phones incorporate support for Bluetooth wireless communication technology or even Wi-Fi wireless local area network support. However, integrators have to pay for Bluetooth integration, while Wi-Fi implementation usually requires higher battery capacities, making both technologies quite unusable for low-cost mobile phones, which would benefit from local connectivity technologies.

The goal being to have the new technology available to the market as fast as possible, Nokia is defining the Wibree interoperability specification together with a group of other leading companies representing semiconductor manufacturers, device vendors and qualification service providers. The technology will be made broadly available to the industry through an open and preferably existing forum enabling wide adoption of the technology, the company said. The forum solution is under evaluation and will be defined by the time the specification is finalized. According to the current estimate the first commercial version of the interoperability specification will be available during second quarter of 2007.


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