(Special Interest Group) today announced the launch of its "Ditch The Dongle"
campaign in response to a recent study conducted in Sweden. The study shows
two-thirds of surveyed consumers using 3G dongles for connecting to Internet are
interested in saving money by connecting through the mobile phone instead. Not
only is it less costly to add a data plan to an existing mobile phone
subscription but it is also more convenient. By leveraging the convenience of
Bluetooth wireless technology for their mobile Internet connection consumers can
avoid the costs associated with the purchase of a separate 3G modem and the
restraints of the standard 12-24 month required subscription typically used in
many European markets.
Research also shows that among four major Swedish carriers consumer savings
was up to 40 % when using a mobile phone as a Internet access point compared to
a 3G dongle with subscription.
"We hear from a lot of consumers that it is difficult to see what way of
mobile connecting to the web is most convenient and affordable", says Anders
Edlund, Marketing Director for the Bluetooth SIG: "As we found that it was
indeed very difficult to compare apples with apples, we asked an independent
study to analyze the situation for us."
Accessing the Internet with a Bluetooth connection to the mobile phone acting
as a Internet access point is easy and step by step instructions can be found at
www.bluetooth.com/Internetaccess. It is typically done by making Bluetooth
discoverable (visible) in the mobile phone and then creating a PAN (Personal
Area Network) connection from the computer by accessing the Bluetooth
functionality from the control panel. This also assumes the mobile phone is
Internet capable and configured for direct Internet access.
So far so good and the Bluetooth SIG's press release. And I have to admit
that I was always a big fan of wireless Internet connections using Bluetooth!
However, the Bluetooth SIG seems to have overseen that today's HSDPA is too fast
for the widely used Bluetooth 2.0+EDR and Bluetooth 2.1+EDR standards. While
HSDPA can server up to 7.2 or even 14.4 Mbps (while HSPA+ can even serve up to
28 Mbps), Bluetooth 2.0/2.1 +EDR is only able to serve gross air data rates of 2
to 3 Mbps. Therefore the bottleneck isn't the air interface anymore but the
connection between the mobile phone and the Notebook. Only with Bluetooth
3.0+HS, the situation will become better because Bluetooth 3.0+HS is designed to
theoretically support data transfer speeds of up to 24 Mbps, which is sufficient
for HSDPA but again not good enough for HSPA+, not to talk about LTE.
So yes, theoretically Bluetooth would be a great connection to bridge a
Notebook to a mobile phone to use the mobile phone's WWAN capabilities but
Bluetooth evolved too slow and isn't on the level of USB or WiFi anymore which
are the way better technologies today to connect a mobile phone with a PC to use
it as a kind of wireless modem.
Cheers ~ Arne