THE HISTORY OF BLUETOOTH

Wikipedia

The development of the "short-link" radio technology, later named Bluetooth, was initiated in 1989 by Nils Rydbeck, CTO at Ericsson Mobile in Lund, Sweden. The purpose was to develop wireless headsets, according to two inventions by Johan Ullman, SE 8902098-6, issued 1989-06-12 and SE 9202239, issued 1992-07-24. Nils Rydbeck tasked Tord Wingren with specifying and Jaap Haartsen and Sven Mattisson with developing. Both were working for Ericsson in Lund. In 1990, Jaap Haartsen was nominated by the European Patent Office for the European Inventor Award. From 1997 Örjan Johansson became the project leader and propelled the technology and standardization.

In 1997, Adalio Sanchez, then head of IBM ThinkPad product R&D, approached Nils Rybeck about collaborating on integrating a cell phone into a ThinkPad notebook. The two assigned engineers from Ericsson and IBM to study the idea. The conclusion was that power consumption on cellphone technology at that time was too high to allow viable integration into a notebook and still achieve adequate battery life. Instead,the two companies agreed to integrate Ericsson's short-link technology on both a ThinkPad notebook and an Ericsson phone to accomplish the goal. Since neither IBM ThinkPad notebooks nor Ericsson phones were the market share leaders in their respective markets at that time, Adalio Sanchez and Nils Rydbeck agreed to make the short-link technology an open industry standard to permit each player maximum market access. Ericsson contributed the short-link radio technology, and IBM contributed patents around the logical layer. Adalio Sanchez of IBM then recruited Stephen Nachtsheim of Intel to join and then Intel also recruited Toshiba and Nokia. In May 1998, the Bluetooth SIG was launched with IBM and Ericsson as the founding signatories and a total of five members: Ericsson, Intel, Nokia, Toshiba and IBM.

 

The first consumer Bluetooth device was launched in 1999. It was a hands-free mobile headset which earned the "Best of show Technology Award" at COMDEX. The first Bluetooth mobile phone was the Ericsson T36 but it was the revised T39 model which actually made it to store shelves in 2001. In parallel, IBM introduced the IBM ThinkPad A30 in October 2001 which was the first notebook with integrated Bluetooth.

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