We see the name and iconic Bluetooth logo on virtually every device we own - headphones, speakers, even toothbrushes but do you know what is the meaning behind Bluetooth.
But first, let me tell you about Bluetooth, Bluetooth technology is a regular part of your mobile experience these days. It covers everything from audio for wireless headphones and speakers, pairing gaming controllers and keyboards, tethering internet connections, and even occasionally transferring files over the air. It’s a feature that gets more useful every year, which is pretty remarkable considering how relatively limited its scope was when it was created over 31 years ago.
Bluetooth is named after a 10th-century Scandinavian king. Harald " Blatant" Gormsson was a Viking king who ruled Denmark and Norway from the year 958 until 985. There are many accomplishments credited to him, but greatest of all is that he united Denmark and Norway under his rule. Gormsson was also known for his dead tooth, which had a very dark blue-grey shade. It was so prominent that his nickname was Blatand, which translates from Danish to "Bluetooth".
The development of the "short-link" radio technology, later named Bluetooth, was initiated in 1989 by Nils Rydbeck, CTO at Ericsson Mobile in Lund, Sweden. The purpose was to develop wireless headsets, according to two inventions by Johan Ullman, SE 8902098-6, issued 1989-06-12 and SE 9202239, issued 1992-07-24. Nils Rydbeck tasked Tord Wingren with specifying and Dutchman Jaap Haartsen and Sven Mattisson with developing. Both were working for Ericsson in Lund. In 1990, Jaap Haartsen was nominated by the European Patent Office for the European Inventor Award. From 1997 Örjan Johansson became the project leader and propelled the technology and standardization.
In 1997, Adagio Sanchez, then head of IBM ThinkPad product R&D, approached Nils Rydbeck about collaborating on integrating a mobile phone into a ThinkPad notebook. The two assigned engineers from Ericsson and IBM to study the idea. The conclusion was that power consumption on cellphone technology at that time was too high to allow viable integration into a notebook and still achieve adequate battery life. Instead, the two companies agreed to integrate Ericsson's short-link technology on both a ThinkPad notebook and an Ericsson phone to accomplish the goal. Since neither IBM ThinkPad notebooks nor Ericsson phones were the market share leaders in their respective markets at that time, Adagio Sanchez and Nils Rydbeck agreed to make the short-link technology an open industry standard to permit each player maximum market access. Ericsson contributed the short-link radio technology, and IBM contributed patents around the logical layer. Adagio Sanchez of IBM then recruited Stephen Nachtsheim of Intel to join and then Intel also recruited Toshiba and Nokia. In May 1998, the Bluetooth SIG was launched with IBM and Ericsson as the founding signatories and a total of five members: Ericsson, Intel, Nokia, Toshiba, and IBM.
The first consumer Bluetooth device was launched in 1999. It was a hands-free mobile headset that earned the "Best of show Technology Award" at COMDEX. The first Bluetooth mobile phone was the Ericsson T36 but it was the revised T39 model which made it to store shelves in 2001. In parallel, IBM introduced the IBM ThinkPad A30 in October 2001 which was the first notebook with integrated Bluetooth.