Bluetooth LE to support 6 GHz frequency band

Bluetooth 6 GHz

So far, the popular Bluetooth wireless communication protocol would only rely on the 2.4 GHz frequency band, but this may change in the future, as the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) has recently announced a new “specification development project” to add the 6 GHz frequency band to Bluetooth LE.

Mark Powell, CEO of the Bluetooth SIG “explains” the move:

The Bluetooth SIG community is constantly evolving the technology to meet ever expanding market demands for wireless communications. Expanding into the 6 GHz spectrum band will ensure the community can continue to make the enhancements necessary to pave the way for the next twenty years of Bluetooth innovation.

I get it that’s a long-term move, but it does not explain exactly why the additional 6 GHz (and 5 GHz) bands may be necessary. I’d just suspect as more devices such as BLE sensors get more widely added that adds to the traffic jam on the 2.4 GHz band leading to potential connection issues. I do have this problem with my phone as it only supports 2.4 GHz WiFi, and I have to switch to cellular data when using a Bluetooth headset to avoid audio cuts.  Going to 6 GHz could also enable higher data rates for Bluetooth LE as use cases for the Low Energy version of the Bluetooth standard expand beyond sensor data and LE audio.

Kevin Robinson, President and CEO of Wi-Fi Alliance, welcomes the move that WiFi did several years ago.

Designating 6 GHz for unlicensed use creates a valuable spectrum resource that is recognized globally for its ability to bring tremendous socioeconomic benefits. Wi-Fi Alliance looks forward to collaborating with the Bluetooth SIG to ensure our successful co-existence in the band.

If you’re into technical details you won’t find those in the press release nor the public section of the Bluetooth website about the 6 GHz band, and you’d need to be a Bluetooth SIG member and join the Higher Bands for LE Subgroup of the Core Specification Working Group to access work-in-progress documentation and discussions.


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William Barath
William Barath
1 year ago

For me, 5/6GHz and mmWave make more sense for Bluetooth than they do for WiFi and Mobile Data. Those high frequencies do not penetrate walls well, or people for that matter, so they’re good for short range line of sight, which is also good for low power. With 5nm chips we can do 5GHz RF on a low power budget, and the shorter the transmit time, the less power and the less congestion for hundreds of small devices in close quarters, like BT headsets on a bus / subway car / airplane. I get that it won’t be cheap from… Read more »

1 year ago

Why would you make Bluetooth chips on a 5 nm node? That makes no sense, plus most RF components don’t work well on small nodes.

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