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How Did Bluetooth 4.0 Change Your Bluetooth Headset?

The standard that Bluetooth headsets use to communicate with a cell phone (that is, Bluetooth) is constantly being improved by technology companies.  Depending on the age of a given Bluetooth headset, it will be based on a certain standard.  An older Bluetooth headset will not have certain features that have only been created and added to the standard since the Bluetooth headset was made.

One significant improvement with Bluetooth 4.0 is the ability to use the “Bluetooth Low Energy” protocol.  Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) slightly alters the earlier methods used by a Bluetooth headset to connect to a phone, so that there is less power used.  As a result, a Bluetooth headset using Bluetooth 4.0 should survive longer before requiring a recharge.  The same is true of the phone your Bluetooth headset is paired to.  So, with Bluetooth 4.0, you can expect an improvement in the battery performance of your Bluetooth headset.

Bluetooth 4.0 has also reduced latency.  This essentially means that data sent between your Bluetooth headset and your phone moves more quickly.  Rather than sending larger chunks of data more infrequently, your Bluetooth headset will send smaller packets of data more often, resulting in less lag when you are speaking to someone.  Ideally, in this way, you will perceive no difference between using your Bluetooth headset to call someone, and just using your phone’s earpiece.

A new Bluetooth headset will also include the ability to use Near Field Communication (NFC) to quickly connect to a phone.  Assuming your phone also has an NFC chip, you will have the option to tap your Bluetooth headset against the handset to quickly pair your devices.  While a relatively small thing, it adds to the level of convenience derived from having a Bluetooth headset.  Not everyone’s phone will be equipped with NFC at the moment—it is still an emerging technology—but some have it, and many more will include it soon, and your Bluetooth headset will be prepared for when you have a phone with NFC.

Bluetooth 4.0 is the newest revision to the standard, but in all likelihood, there will be further changes over time, so in 4 years you may see the Bluetooth 5.0 revision.  For now though, the improvements made to a current Bluetooth headset compared to one 5 years ago are crazy.  A Bluetooth headset today will last longer, lag less, and connect more easily than any Bluetooth headset in the past.