skip to main content
Close Icon We use cookies to improve your website experience.  To learn about our use of cookies and how you can manage your cookie settings, please see our Cookie Policy.  By continuing to use the website, you consent to our use of cookies.
Global Search Configuration

Ovum view


Bluetooth is positioning itself to take an enlarged role in the smart home, thanks to the launch of version 5.0 of the protocol and the coming launch of mesh networking capabilities. At its Bluetooth World event in Santa Clara, California, the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) highlighted how the increased range and throughput enabled by Bluetooth 5 will lead to advances in areas such as the smart home, smart buildings, and beacons.

Bluetooth as the second tier of authentication in the home

Thanks to Bluetooth 4, also known as Bluetooth low energy (BLE), the protocol has grown out of its initial niche of enabling wireless audio and has become the standard of choice for tethering devices such as tethering wearables to smartphones. In the smart home, Bluetooth is also the preferred way of connecting smart locks, such as those from Kwikset, because it enables point-to-point interaction instead of sending the request to unlock the front door from the user's smartphone to the Wi-Fi router and back to the lock.

Bluetooth 5 is expected to enable further use cases in the smart home and smart building, owing to its longer range and increased data transmission capabilities. The SIG envisions Bluetooth coexisting with other protocols, primarily Wi-Fi, in the smart home, where Bluetooth's advantage would lie in uses around two-tier authentication. For instance, Bluetooth could notify smart home devices that the user has entered, triggering climate, lighting, and entertainment settings based on which member of the household is present.

The power improvements in BLE and Bluetooth 5 will be critical for powering uses in the smart home, as well as mesh networking capabilities, which are expected to arrive by the end of 2017. Just as critical will be Bluetooth's interoperability, such as its Transport Delivery Service, in ensuring that Bluetooth devices can communicate with devices using other protocols that are better suited to heavy data transmission. Wi-Fi, for example, will continue to be the cornerstone of the smart home network.


Further reading

"Bluetooth's move to mesh networks will be key to adoption in industrial IoT," TE0019-000010 (April 2015)

"Bluetooth SIG launches Transport Delivery Service to connect IoT standards," TE0004-001070 (March 2016)


Francesco Radicati, Senior Analyst, Consumer Technology

Recommended Articles

  • Internet of Things

    IoT Investments Tracker: 1Q20

    By Alexandra Rehak 17 Feb 2020

    This tracker provides an updated list of investments and acquisitions in the IoT space by companies in the technology, telco (CSP), and the consumer electronics or industrial segments.

  • Consumer & Entertainment Services

    Social Media Tracker: 2H19

    By Smita Sharma 17 Feb 2020

    The tracker summarizes recent announcements by social media companies. Announcements can be filtered by announcement type, region, country, company name, and service type. The tracker also provides detailed KPIs and projections for key social media players, covering metrics including users, traffic, and revenues.

  • Service Provider Markets, Consumer & Entertainment Services

    France: Mobile, Broadband, TV, and OTT Video Forecasts: 2019–24

    By Diana Gorelik 17 Feb 2020

    The France: Mobile, Broadband, TV, and OTT Video Forecasts: 2019–24 provides subscription and revenue forecasts for major French telecoms and media markets covering mobile, fixed broadband, fixed voice, pay TV, TV advertising, and OTT video.


Have any questions? Speak to a Specialist

Europe, Middle East & Africa team: +44 7771 980316

Asia-Pacific team: +61 (0)3 960 16700

US team: +1 212-652-5335

Email us at

You can also contact your named/allocated Client Services Executive using their direct dial.
PR enquiries - Email us at

Contact marketing -

Already an Ovum client? Login to the Knowledge Center now