Bluetooth a standard for short-range wireless communications between electronic devices… but the short range part of that may be a bit dated.
Now it looks like some of the first devices with Bluetooth 5.0 could be coming soon. A number of products have received certification for the new Bluetooth 5.0 spec, including upcoming smartphones from Samsung.
Specifically, there are listings for new phones from Samsung with model numbers including SM-G480U, SM-G485U, and GM-G480F. Based on the names, I suspect these will be variants of of a single phone rather than completely different devices.
Other companies that have received Bluetooth 5.0 certification include Chip makers Qualcomm and Broadcom and Chip designer ARM.
For the most part, you don’t really need faster speeds or better range if all you want to do with Bluetooth is beam audio to your wireless headphones or use a wireless mouse and keyboard. But the new standard could also enable Bluetooth to compete with other technologies for smart home devices including ZigBee and Z-Wave.
I’m curious to see if Samsung or other companies come up with any other interesting applications for the technology.