BUSINESS

‘Bluetooth may play bigger role in Samsung smart home’

By Shin Ji-hye
  • Published : Sept 7, 2017 - 16:14
  • Updated : Sept 7, 2017 - 16:17
The vice president of Bluetooth Special Interest Group, an alliance of thousands of multinational tech firms, on Thursday said that he expects to see mesh networking technology playing a bigger role in the smart home technologies being developed by South Korean tech giants.

“Although mesh networking is mainly designed for industrial areas, it can also be used for smart home areas to control door lock security, heating, cooling and lighting more conveniently by connecting them,” Ken Kolderup, vice president of Bluetooth SIG, told The Korea Herald.

“We certainly hope Bluetooth’s mesh network plays a role in Samsung’s (smart home) product plans,” Kolderup added. 
Ken Kolderup, vice president of Bluetooth SIG (Bluetooth SIG)

Kolderup was in Seoul to introduce the new mesh networking technology to Korea. Bluetooth SIG oversees the development of Bluetooth standards. It has around 32,000 member companies, including Apple, Intel and Microsoft.

Its new mesh networking is a many-to-many communications technology that connects thousands of devices to allow communication with each other compared to traditional point-to-point networking that simply connects individual digital devices like smartphones and tablets.

Mesh networking is mainly used for building automation, wireless sensor networks in factories and asset tracking in hospitals and airports based on Bluetooth Low Energy.

Kolderup said Samsung is a very important member company to Bluetooth SIG as the firm uses Bluetooth products annually more than anyone else.

The Korean tech giant is widely using Bluetooth technology for most of its digital devices such as smartphones and tablets. However, it uses Wi-Fi networks for its smart homes to connect all of its home appliances, rather than Bluetooth, due to Wi-Fi’s longer connectivity, better penetration of obstacles such as walls, and better security, according to the company.

But things may change in the future as “Bluetooth continues to be upgraded,” a Samsung’s official said.

Connectivity is recently a big buzzword in the smart home industry. Samsung Electronics plans to adopt smart functions in all of its home appliances by 2020 to expand connectivity. LG plans to double investments in smart homes by 2020 with a focus on open connectivity.

The global Bluetooth Low Energy-powered device market is expected to grow to 1.5 billion units by 2022 from 500 million units in 2016, according to the US research firm ABI Research.

By Shin Ji-hye (shinjh@heraldcorp.com)