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Android Gains Bluetooth Smart Support

Google Announces New Android 4.3 Jelly Bean Includes Native Bluetooth® Smart Support

Following on from Apple’s recent announcement that iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks will include native support for certain Bluetooth® Smart profiles, Google have now made a similar announcement for their Android OS. During their “breakfast with Sundar Pichai liveblog”, Google announced the latest version of their mobile OS, Android 4.3 Jelly Bean, and that it includes support for Bluetooth® Smart.

Google also announced the new Nexus 7 tablet, which will be among the first devices to run the updated OS and to also be Bluetooth® Smart Ready.

According to the Bluetooth SIG “The release of Android 4.3 gives Bluetooth Smart developers an easy way to connect their devices to their applications on Android. Developers can now use the new Android API to feed data collected from Bluetooth Smart appcessories, like fitness monitors or medical devices, to their apps running on Bluetooth Smart Ready products, like smartphones or tablets. With an update to Android 4.3, consumers can expect their Android smartphone or tablet to become an even more useful tool as thousands of Bluetooth Smart sensor products and their associated Android apps come to market.”.

Google’s Android Developers Blog states that with Bluetooth® Smart “your apps can communicate with the many types of low-power Bluetooth Smart devices and sensors available today, to provide new features for fitness, medical, location, proximity, and more”.

Combined with Apple’s earlier announcement, this confirms that a very significant portion of all new mobile phones and tablets will now be Bluetooth® Smart Ready, making the potential market for low-power wirelessly-connected accessories huge.

(Note: Bluetooth® Smart is now known as Bluetooth® Low Energy).