This may seem like an odd development, especially if you know that many Android devices already feature Bluetooth 4.0, the version in which Bluetooth Smart (that is, Bluetooth Low Energy) first appeared. What's new here, though, is that the fresh flavor of Android, expected to hit in the next few months, will natively integrate all of Bluetooth 4.0's fancy tricks, including BLE, or BT Smart. Previous Android iterations … Read more
Fitbit recently launched the Flex, the company's first wrist-worn activity monitor that syncs with your smartphone. The Flex uses Bluetooth 4.0 to sync with compatible smartphones (more on this in a minute), keeping your current activity stats updated.
When you first get the Flex, you'll need to do some work to get it set up, but don't worry -- it won't take you any longer than it does to wait in line at Starbucks.
Upon opening the Flex, you'll notice the actual tracker is inserted into the large wristband. Remove the tracker and use … Read more
Entrepreneur Rakesh Kumar says he's "blown away" by the deluge of phone calls and traffic his site's getting after he pledged to plunk down more than half a million dollars for a half-hour coffee meeting with Apple CEO Tim Cook.
"The Web site's gotten an incredible spike," Kumar told CNET in a phone interview on Friday.
Kumar, whose company DrBluetooth is working on a Bluetooth headset that encrypts voice and can be controlled through gestures, is the latest in a string of more than 80 people who have bid on a chance to … Read more
The advent of Bluetooth systems in cars became a boon for drivers, enabling hands-free phone calls and wirelessly streaming music from a smartphone. But if your car is more than five years old, it likely does not feature this technology. The Kinivo BTC450 makes for an easy and inexpensive way of adding Bluetooth to an older car.
The Kinivo BTC450 is a Bluetooth adapter. Lacking its own speaker, it is designed to plug into a car stereo's auxiliary input.
And therein lies its biggest limitation.
The majority of cars equipped with an auxiliary input but no Bluetooth system were … Read more
Those of us who can never find our cars in a crowded parking garage may one day get a helping hand from Apple.
Published Thursday by the U.S. Trade and Patent Office, an Apple patent application called "Method for locating a vehicle" describes a technology in which your mobile device can talk to your car through a Bluetooth connection to confirm that it's parked somewhere nearby. The parking garage itself would also have its own wireless system to pinpoint the exact location of your car.
A map would then display on your phone to lead you … Read more
Bluetooth devices we attach to our Macs include everything from phones to mice, speakers, and printers. As with any connection there may be instances when the device will not connect, or continually drops its connection to the Mac. These issues can be frustrating to deal with, but should this happen there are a couple of things you can do to check the connection and hopefully increase its stability.
Similar to Wi-Fi connections, Bluetooth uses a radio as a means of communication, so if you are experiencing drop-outs then the first thing to do is check the signal strength, which is … Read more
I get all panicked when I have to put together music for a party. It's not because I hate music; it's because I love it too much.
Putting together a playlist is like putting my ego on the line. If someone doesn't like a song I picked out -- or just fails to love it as much as I hoped they would -- it has the power to send me into a depressive spiral of self-loathing.
I'm weird that way. I could never make it as a DJ.
That why I was excited to see CNET … Read more
Most cars these days come with Bluetooth, supporting both hands-free calls and audio streaming. For older cars, GoGroove's SmartMini Aux works as a relatively cheap means of adding these wireless features.
However, the car needs an auxiliary input or adapter for running audio to the stereo.
The SmartMini Aux, constructed of black plastic, looks like an ultramodern drawer pull. Its offset T shape includes a flared base fitted with a Velcro pad for mounting in a car. A long wire tipped with a 1/8-inch audio jack leads out of the base.
The business end, a short, curved bar, … Read more
In my kitchen there's a big ol' Fluance speaker dock. It's great except for one thing: no Bluetooth. If I want to listen to music, I have to dock my iPhone. And if I want to change apps or playlists, I have to go over to the thing and interact (awkwardly) with the screen while it's docked.
That's why I've always been a fan of Bluetooth speakers, which let me kick back and enjoy my tunes while keeping my phone close at hand. Thankfully, now I can retrofit my Fluance.
For a limited time, and … Read more
Why wear a smartwatch? You might have said the same thing about carrying a smartphone before those got smart enough to be truly useful. Smartwatches are a sort of mini tech trend of the moment, but here's the brutal truth: we wouldn't recommend that our friends buy any of these, unless they're early-adopter watch fetishists. The smartwatches of today have a muddy mix of good, bad, and flat-out ugly features. At best, they're quirky and stylish. At worst, they're hobbled with short battery life or don't work at all.
None of the smartwatches we'… Read more