Bluetooth 4.2 – Better Security, Increased Data Transfer Speeds, Direct Internet Connectivity

Bluetooth 4.2 – Better Security, Increased Data Transfer Speeds, Direct Internet Connectivity

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has announced an updated Bluetooth spec, version 4.2. The new specs introduce a number of new features, as well as speed and privacy improvements.

Bluetooth 4.2


The update also allows for Bluetooth over IPv6, which along with an upcoming update will allow devices to have a direct connection to the Internet and open up new possibilities for Bluetooth sensors and other accessories.

“Bluetooth 4.2 is all about continuing to make Bluetooth Smart the best solution to connect all the technology in your life – from personal sensors to your connected home. In addition to the improvements to the specification itself, a new profile known as IPSP enables IPv6 for Bluetooth, opening entirely new doors for device connectivity,” said Mark Powell, executive director of the Bluetooth SIG. “Bluetooth Smart is the only technology that can scale with the market, provide developers the flexibility to innovate, and be the foundation for the IoT.”

The new spec also includes new privacy features that will make it harder for you to be tracked via your Bluetooth devices. The organization says the new spec will make it so “A Bluetooth Smart location tracker can only be followed by the owner or trusted group all while consuming less power.” The new spec is also said to be more power efficient and includes FIPS-compliant encryption for secure Bluetooth connections.

The SIG notes that the increased privacy will make it tougher for Bluetooth beacons – such as Apple’s iBeacons – to track you as you move through a store, unless you’ve enabled permission for them to do so.

Bluetooth 4.2 also debuts faster data for “Up to 2.5x faster with a packet capacity increase of 10x vs. previous versions.”

Internet connectivity is scheduled to arrive by the end of the year, the Internet Protocol Support Profile (IPSP) will allow Bluetooth Smart sensors to access the Internet directly via IPv6/6LoWPAN.

The Bluetooth 4.2 spec and accompanying documentation can be viewed on the organization’s website.