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Microsoft Shuts Windows On Bluetooth Support

timothy posted more than 13 years ago | from the watchyer-fingers-if-you-rely-on-redmond dept.

Microsoft 154

kilrogg points to "a story from eetimes.com on Microsoft's refusal to include Bluetooth support in their next versions of Windows. They seem to think (as most of us) that 802.11b has a better chance of succeeding." The article cites the recent flopped Bluetooth demo at CeBIT. I'm pretty neutral on Bluetooth, but when's the last time a new technology's first big public demo was perfect?

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154 comments

M$ can easily add support (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320987)

We all know M$ will release a stealth version of whatever they need to when Bluetooth devices become available. That is what they did with Windows 95. When Apple ships new stuff this summer with bluetooth chips (rumored and desired), I'll be trolling for Bluetooth headsets, PDA add-ons, and the like. 802.11 was only the beginning. FireWireLess will extend all of this to high speed storage. We may even someday see native FireWire hard drives (maybe thats asking too much.)

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320988)

With the exception that FireWire was actually developed by Apple.

Re:TCP/IP again (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320989)

If they hadn't integrated TCP/IP at all, there would be no FP trolls at slashdot.

Now I wonder what kind of trolls bluetooth in MS Windows would generate.

Tooth-fairy trolls ?

802.11b (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320990)

i'm all for open standards, but don't you think that 802.11b needs a catchy name to have the hype that bluetooth had?

Re:Sea change at Microsoft (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320991)

XP is due out end of year.
Terminal Server appeared after SP4 I believe. It wasn't part of the service pack. It was a new release of NT Server altogether.
Get your facts straight before you open your mouth next time, bigot.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320992)

Apple maybe good at selecting new technologies. MS is good at making them generally accepted standards. The GUI, for example, would never have been standard on the desktop if it wasn't for MS.

Criticize MS all you want for their extreme abuse of the word innovation, but many of Apple's innovations would never have grown beyond niche status if it weren't for MS's adoption.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320993)

Apple also sponsored the original FCC petition for the unregulated personal frequency spectrum that both 802.11 and bluetooth uses about 10 years ago.

Perfect public demos (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320994)

but when's the last time a new technology's first big public demo was perfect?

April 20, 1998. Bill Gates's big Comdex demo of Win98 [cnn.com] was perfect by my standards. How would you improve upon that performance?

Its like ethernet vs serial (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320995)

I think people might be mistaken when they make the comparison between bluetooth and 802.11 . Yes they are both wireless communcation standards. But bluetooth seems to engineered to be leaner, requiring way less power and cheaper to integrate. 802.11 is fast (by comparison) but probably wont run on AAA bats anytime soon. Its like ethernet vs serial. Sure, you want ethernet everywhere but sometimes that's just not practical.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (2)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320996)

Does this mean that XP won't ship with a DVD player?

Re:Sea change at Microsoft (3)

Anonymous Coward | more than 13 years ago | (#320997)

>What major annual releases? XP isn't out until next year is it?
XP will be on shelves in time for Christmas.

>And didn't Terminal Server - a fairly big deal - appear in SP6.


Not even close. Windows NT 4.0 Terminal Server Edition is a separate NT product from Server and Adv. Server. There is a separate SP6 for it. In Windows 2000, Terminal Services is a builtin service for all versions of Server.

Re:Sea change at Microsoft (1)

volsung (378) | more than 13 years ago | (#320998)

Idiot? Perhaps. Careless? Certainly. You could even go so far as to use the word "Noodle-head". Bigot? Hardly.

Re:Why the "Apples and Oranges" comments? (1)

demon (1039) | more than 13 years ago | (#320999)

That's a bullshit argument, considering you can run any network protocol (NetBEUI, IPX, IP, AppleTalk) over 802.11 networking. It doesn't in any way depend on IP - it's like Ethernet, to it, IP's just another packet it transports from point A to point B.
_____

Re:Not surprising (2)

Chemical Serenity (1324) | more than 13 years ago | (#321000)

I think there's some inherent limitations to BT (at least in its current incarnation) which would keep it from being as popular as maybe they'd like, as well.

For example, the guy doing the presentation was talking about a scenario where someone with a BT enabled device could walk into a room, and his device would know about the other devices available to be used as BT peers. That sounds great, except that you can only have so many devices in a room before things fall down and go boom... thus, BT would not be suitable for applications that might need to scale.

Problems like that would present nasty obstacles for widespread commercial adoption. If every TV and VCR and cel phone is going to have one of these things in 'em (the BT "grand vision of the future"), I can tell you that in MY 10 meter radius, my home, I'd have easily enough devices to overload the levels that are currently being discussed.

Security needs to be definitively addressed too. The concept of someone camping on my doorstep and using my printer doesn't much appeal to me... ;)

--
rickf@transpect.SPAM-B-GONE.net (remove the SPAM-B-GONE bit)

Welp, looks like I have to eat my words... (3)

Chemical Serenity (1324) | more than 13 years ago | (#321001)

At a recent presentation of bluetooth to the local users group, I made a comment to a colleage that even though the presenter made it pretty obvious that things were still clumsy and in development I still thought that bluetooth would probably make it to widespread commercial rollout with at least moderate success.

Within the last week though, finding out that A> the devices don't interoperate properly and B> one of the major players in the game doesn't wanna play any more has made me think otherwise... and it makes me wonder about what's going to happen with all that sticky 'intellectual property' crap the presenter was talking about being all tangled and impossible to discern whose was which. Fuss over that could scuttle things in a heartbeat.

Unless some major positive things happen for BT real soon, I'll be suprised if anything more than a bare few handfuls of peripherals will be made available commercially.

--
rickf@transpect.SPAM-B-GONE.net (remove the SPAM-B-GONE bit)

Re:Why the "Apples and Oranges" comments? (1)

Chainsaw (2302) | more than 13 years ago | (#321002)

Implementing a full IP stack for my keyboard sounds stupid. The whole point of Bluetooth is that devices that work on battery should be able to communicate without wires. Having a wireless mouse and keyboard is just great, and I don't think a 802.11 solution could continue to run for months using simple AA batteries.

The IP address is plain stupid when you consider the benefits you get from the piconet technology. Imagine that you sit down on a train. Pick up your GSM phone, which now is connected to the trains piconet, and tell it to wake you up when you are five kilometers from your end station. The train will compensate for any delays and tell you when you are almost there. Try doing the auto-piconet method with a solid IP address.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (2)

stripes (3681) | more than 13 years ago | (#321005)

I'd be willing to be that the majority of working 802.11b wireless networks in use today are Apple systems.

That wasn't true at the last place I worked. The base stations were all Ciscos (formerly Aeronet or something like that). Almost all of the laptops on it were wintel boxes (a fair number of them running some sort of Unix though). The only Mac that I knew of on them was my own personal box (which I got to play with OSX on).

I'm going to guess that given the vast wintel market share that most laptops are wintels, and even if only 20% of them have airports and 100% of the Macs do, there are still more wintel 802.11 boxes then Macs.

We still probably have Apple to thank for subsidizing, or at least taking no profit on the 802.11, and making the antenna built in (my PowerBook gets much better range then my Viao, and I never er worry about the antenna getting snapped off!).

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (2)

stripes (3681) | more than 13 years ago | (#321006)

With Bluetooth it's possible to use a standard printing "profile".

On the other hand, if you are a printer maker you not only need to add bluetooth hardware, you also have to make your printer conform to the profile (or do so in one mode), which reduces your ability to make your product "different and better".

That's mostly better for the consumer, but worse for the printer makers.

Apple? (3)

JimRay (6620) | more than 13 years ago | (#321010)

So what happens if Apple leads the way here, again? Let's assume that come Macworld in July, Apple unveils wireless keyboards and mice that are compliant with the (published) bluetooth standards? I can picture Steve Jobs, black turtleneck and all, "Now, every mac we ship after today will be bluetooth enabled, to take advantage of the coming devices."
Remember USB and FireWire? Microsoft is STILL catching up with those. Microsoft has had a chance to innovate several times but decided instead to follow along after the innovation happened. This is another time where maybe it's better that someone else innovate so that OPEN standards are created that Microsoft has to abide by. Otherwise, MS could implement their version, flex monopoly muscles, and make everyone else follow along.

Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (5)

JanneM (7445) | more than 13 years ago | (#321011)

802.11 is a wireless replacement for ethernet. Bluetooth is a replacement for short-haul cable like serial cables, wireless phones, and such. They are not in direct competition, but complement each other. 802.11 is high speed, but expensive and power-hungry, while bluetooth is short range, low speed, cheap and power efficient (an important requirement for PDA:s, phone handsets and other gadgets with a limited battery life). You wouldn't use Bluetooth as a replacement for cable networks, and you won't want to use 802.11 as a replacement for serial or parallel cable.

I don't want either 802.11 or Bluetooth, I want both -- and use them for the different things they are meant for.

/Janne

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

Dino (9081) | more than 13 years ago | (#321012)

Yes, and MS finally met the Amiga's performance some ten years after the Amiga was released. Ooooh, ooh, I can connect to other computers, listen to music and play games at the same time! Neat-- for 1985. I'm just glad they finally caught up to the rest of the industry. *yawn*
---------------------------

Bluetooth is not in MSs interest (2)

arivanov (12034) | more than 13 years ago | (#321017)

Bluetooth has never been in the MS best interest. It is in the interest of Sony, JVC, and other entertainment and home equipment vendors. They (for example look for the interviews with Sony's boss) will eat MS alive the moment they can and they hate it. They will have most of the profit margin. Microsoft will not earn from it. Even if it could they will not let it.

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (1)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321018)

I haven't seen anything about IBM shipping a USB Bluetooth adapter, but they are shipping a PC Card (PCMCIA) adapter. There is information (and pricing) for it on CNet [cnet.com] . I ran across this product during my searces for support of Bluetooth under Linux [matlock.com] .

A quick hunt through IBM's website turns up the PC Card adapter under their wireless products section, but no mention of USB. My guess would be they don't have anything shipping yet.

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (1)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321019)

There have been a lot of these "poof" events lately. Product pages at both Intel and 3Com have gone away. Motorola still has a products page up, but it provides next to no information. The only idea I can offer up is that when these products were based on the 1.0 Bluetooth spec and were pulled to retool for the 1.1 spec.

Anyone who does have working links for Bluetooth products, please send them to me to be put on my Bluetooth on Linux [matlock.com] page. Also, consider visiting the Bluetooth topsites [topsitelists.com] list to keep Linux high on the links list.

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (2)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321020)

On the other hand, if you are a printer maker you not only need to add bluetooth hardware, you also have to make your printer conform to the profile (or do so in one mode), which reduces your ability to make your product "different and better".

It is possible for a device to support more than one profile. In the case of a printer, in addition to the "printer" profile, the device could also support the "serial tunnel" (or whatever the proper name is) profile. Once this serial tunnel is established it will look like the printer is directly connected to the computer trying to print. With that, any advanced features can be taken care of.

Rather than being a limitation, the profiles act to give verstatility without as much overhead.

Re:No.. I don't get it. (2)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321021)

Bluetooth is what IRDA should have been.

That is the most profound, and appropriate, statement I've read on here today! People have to remember that different products have different aims. Look at all the promises made about IRDA a few years back and most of them can be applied to Bluetooth. IRDA is one technology that Bluetooth is likely to completely replace in a few years.

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (3)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321026)

Bluetooth also provides a higher level abstraction than 802.11. When printing over a standard network you have to know the model of printer at the other end. With Bluetooth it's possible to use a standard printing "profile". This keep you from having to carry 200 printer drivers on your PDA to handle any situation you walk into. Similar profiles exist for other environments such as file transfer and serial port tunneling.

For those wanting more information, I have a page on using Bluetooth with Linux [matlock.com] . Also, you can get more information about Bluetooth in general at a Bluetooth topsites list [topsitelists.com] that is available.

Re:The nail in the coffin for Bluetooth. (3)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321027)

It's a little early in the life cycle to be declaring Bluetooth dead and buried. The hardware is only just now starting to show up. Software is under active development. Even though Microsoft is sitting on their back side, other companies are developing Windows support for Bluetooth. There is also work underway to support Bluetooth under Linux [matlock.com] . I've already seen reports of success connecting Linux and Windows machines using Bluetooth for file transfers.

Microsoft is not making a mistake in holding off in shipping Bluetooth enabled versions of their OS. They are making a mistake in not commiting openly to providing Bluetooth support as a service pack after the product ships and Bluetooth standards settle down. This can probably be written off as another marketing blunder.

There is a big difference between Bluetooth and Betamax. Bluetooth is an open standard. Sony wanted to collect a royalty of use of Betamax. If you had drawn a comparison between Fireware (with Apple) and Betamax it would have been more appropriate.

More resources on what Bluetooth is (and is not) is available from a Bluetooth topsites list [topsitelists.com] which contains a few dozen links to Bluetooth sites.

Several vendors backing off (5)

decaym (12155) | more than 13 years ago | (#321028)

Microsoft isn't alone here. Several vendors are getting squirrely when it comes to Bluetooth support. 3Com had an actual products page for Bluetooth up until about a week ago. Now, the link just circles back to their home page. Intel took their Bluetooth info down somewhere before that.

I've been collecting links for Bluetooth under Linux [matlock.com] for the last few weeks. Oddly, some of the information is going away as fast as new information is coming online. The good news, however, is that with Microsoft's latest move we will see Bluetooth for Linux support well before Bluetooth for Windows support at the kernel level. If Microsoft doesn't include support, it will be up to each individual vendor to come up with their own OS API implementation.

For people wanting to get more information on Bluetooth, there is a topsites list [topsitelists.com] of links to information resources. Please, help to keep the Linux links high on the list. :)

Re:Uhhhh (1)

um... Lucas (13147) | more than 13 years ago | (#321029)

OFFTOPIC: Why even bother putting your email address up if everyone has to take so many steps in order to contact you?

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (5)

Spruitje (15331) | more than 13 years ago | (#321033)


802.11 is a wireless replacement for ethernet. Bluetooth is a replacement for short-haul cable like serial cables, wireless phones, and such. They are not in direct competition, but complement each other. 802.11 is high speed, but expensive and power-hungry, while bluetooth is short range, low speed, cheap and power efficient (an important requirement for PDA:s, phone handsets and other gadgets with a limited battery life). You wouldn't use Bluetooth as a replacement for cable networks, and you won't want to use 802.11 as a replacement for serial or parallel cable.

Doesn't surprise me at all.
Windows 2000 doesn't support IrDA.
At least, not the old way.
And Apple is working to support Bluetooth with MacOS X.
Second, IBM has made a small Bluetooth transceiver which fits into an USB-plug.

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (1)

great om (18682) | more than 13 years ago | (#321035)

I saw this plug, it's actually made by intel, but I looked for it on their website --and poof, it appears to be gone.

No.. I don't get it. (2)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 13 years ago | (#321036)

Ethernet != Internet.. that's just what we tend to use it for. And Bluetooth can be used the same way.

But the point is.. you hook printers to the network because its' FAST. You use bluetooth because it's tiny, low-power, and convenient.

Bluetooth is what IRDA should have been.

Never ceases to amaze me. (4)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 13 years ago | (#321037)

802.11 and Bluetooth are *totally different*.
It makes me sick to see all this 'bluetooth networking'.

802.11 is for wireless lan.

Bluetooth is for simple data communications between portable devices.

SHEESH.

Or to follow up.. (4)

mindstrm (20013) | more than 13 years ago | (#321038)

Bluetooth is good because it can be implemented in 1 or 2 chips, with the antennae and transmitter in the chips..... so it is *cheap* to wirelessly enable a device. That was the whole point of bluetooth.. so all these pda developers and shit could easily and cheaply make stuff communiacate.

Re:Bluetooth is not in MSs interest (4)

jilles (20976) | more than 13 years ago | (#321039)

It is in their interest, it would be a reason for users to upgrade to XP. And considering there are very few other reasons to do so, it would be a good idea to include this feature. On the other hand, bluetooth seems to be a moving target right now and I agree with MS that it would be a bad idea to include a beta product with XP (assuming they have no intention of further delaying XP). IN addition, vendors of bluetooth enabled devices might include their own drivers for bluetooth, there are even open source versions of bluetooth drivers (ok they are for linux, not for win32).

Re:Technology Demonstration (1)

elgen (22169) | more than 13 years ago | (#321040)

Can anyone say "blue screen of death"?

BlueTooth of Death?

- Sorry, couldn't resist...

Probable reason? (3)

claes (25551) | more than 13 years ago | (#321043)

Microsoft probably do not want Bluetooth to sync devices. That does not fit their .net strategy. Instead, they want you to sync your data through some service, so that all information passes through their portals. For example, if you want to sync your Palm with you PC, they rather want you to connect to palm.net (or something like it) and then download your information to your pc from there, rather than letting the palm sync with the pc directly.

Good quote (2)

raffe (28595) | more than 13 years ago | (#321044)

"I don't think the maturity of Bluetooth technology is good enough to ship the bits when Windows XP is released," said Carl Stork, general manager of Microsoft's Windows division, speaking in an interview at the Windows Hardware Engineering Conference (WinHEC) here. "We wouldn't want to ship something that doesn't work, and Bluetooth doesn't yet meet a certain quality level." Yeah right, that WAS funny!!!! HAHAHA

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

CSC (31551) | more than 13 years ago | (#321045)

(I love trolling back when someone picks on my messages!)

Does that mean that Windows does ship with a DVD player?

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

CSC (31551) | more than 13 years ago | (#321046)

Apple maybe good at selecting new technologies. MS is good at making them generally accepted standards. The GUI, for example, would never have been standard on the desktop if it wasn't for MS.

Criticize MS all you want for their extreme abuse of the word innovation, but many of Apple's innovations would never have grown beyond niche status if it weren't for MS's adoption.

Question: why dit it become standard through Microsoft?
Answer: because Microsoft already owned the OS market at that time, through MS-DOS.

MS adopted this UI because Apple was successful with it; the real reason MS dominates the market is the MS-DOS installed base, which was an accidental gift from IBM.

MS follows Apple's track... (4)

CSC (31551) | more than 13 years ago | (#321047)

Just like Firewire, 802.11 is adopted first by Apple, then picked as the technology of choice by Microsoft.

In a way this is a good sign for Apple: they are leading again, just like the elder days of look&feel... (which might come again with XP vs. OS X)

This doesn't seem right. (5)

hey! (33014) | more than 13 years ago | (#321049)

From the article:

Because 802.11 uses the Internet Protocol (IP) for communications, it can rely on IP systems services in the operating system. Bluetooth, however, does not use IP, and thus must rely on application-level support for communications.

Isn't this backwards? That is to say IP over 802.11 uses 802.11 for link level and physical connectivity, and 802.11 looks at the IP packet headers as just another kind of meanignless payload? You should be able to put any kind of protocol built to be layered this way on top of 802.11, shouldn't you? In fact I have an 802.11 LAN cards in my SOHO and it appears that I can bind any protocols I want to them.

If what I learned way back in school about this stuff is correct, the issue is whether 802.11 is a good way to share the wireless medium -- in this case a piece of radio spectrum.

Somebody who understands 802.11 is welcome to correct me, but I've been told that 802.11 is basically Ethernet over radio. It seems to me that if this is true, I'd expect 802.11 to be a poor thing for ubiquitous interdevice networking. You could gin up small demonstrations that'd work great, but they just wouldn't scale. The reason why is Ethernet's Listen Before Talk method of sharing the medium. Managing wire LANs that work this was is a bit easier, because collision domains have limited numbers of devices, have limited extent, and can be easily separated. Without this ability, as the packet rate grows larger devices spend more time waiting to talk (and this is nondeterministic, to boot). As the LAN gets physically larger, the number of unavoidable collisions also increases.

Back in the late 80s when thinwire Ethernet was still common and large 10BaseT hubs were a common backbone solution (and when I was more up to date;-) a lot of people had doubts about the scalability of Ethernet over the next decade. The advent of cheap 100BaseTX and affordability of large switches with massive backplane bandwidth solved this problem for most people by keeping collision domains small and capacious.

However, if you imagine a large convention center full of bluetooth cell phones, computers, pdas, and miscellaneous peripherals, all sharing a common transmission medium, anything that worked remotely like Ethernet is going to fail: too many devices waiting to talk -- no guarantee of fair queueing -- no defined physical LAN extent.

Even leaving aside issues of cost, complexity, and power consumption, 802.11 would be a poor choice. It might work well in a SOHO or small LAN environment where there wasn't much interference from nearby wireless LANs.

Bluetooth?! why? (1)

cutterjohn (34042) | more than 13 years ago | (#321050)

My question is: why do we need Bluetooth when 802.11b already has a pretty good foothold, and does support low power chipsets? Additionally more versatile higher powered drivers could be used, but run at lower power (programmatically) while still allowing the potential for longer range communication if desired. Not to mention that 802.11b is in relatively widespread use, and the technology works, as demonstrated by this posting.

Who cares if *Microsoft* supports it? (3)

macpeep (36699) | more than 13 years ago | (#321052)

The emphasis is on MICROSOFT. I can go to a store TODAY and buy a Toshiba bluetooth PCMCIA card and plug it into my laptop and install the drivers for it and it will work fine with my Nokia 6210 phone with bluetooth (it's an add-on). I couldn't care less if Microsoft supports it or not. Just like Microsoft doesn't have to support my Sony monitor - as long as Sony has drivers for it that works with Windows.

Re:Good quote (4)

macpeep (36699) | more than 13 years ago | (#321053)

ha-ha. Instead of sarcasm, why can't we be glad to see that Microsoft finally sees to have understood that quality matters. If you look at their pages about Windows XP and even Windows 2000, there's a lot of emphasis on stability and quality. They show benchmarks showing that they are more stable etc. etc. Judging from my own experience, it's true too.. Microsoft really seems to have shifted a lot of focus to quality and stability. It may or may not be because open source and Linux etc. but it's a good thing and I for one applaud that.

killing bluetooth (2)

CAIMLAS (41445) | more than 13 years ago | (#321055)

This will effectively kill bluetooth. The lack of support for it in the OS will not allow it to prosper. What will the creators think of this blatant shafting by MS? Moreover, might this shafting be due to said creator's acceptance of Linux?

-------
CAIMLAS

Re:Uhhhh (1)

PurpleBob (63566) | more than 13 years ago | (#321057)

Because it's fun. I had a very similar sig for a while.

Honestly, do people _normally_ get e-mailed by random people on Slashdot, even if they put up their address? No. But once I put up an obfuscated e-mail address, the mail started pouring in, because Slashdotters liked the challenge.

Alas, I can't use that sig anymore.
--
Obfuscated e-mail addresses won't stop sadistic 12-year-old ACs.

Newbie Q. What does Bluetooth give the consumer? (2)

UnknownSoldier (67820) | more than 13 years ago | (#321058)

See subject for the question.

Please don't start a flamewar ... I'm just curious as to what problem BlueTooth is trying to solve.

Re:Ouch... Arguments for, against. (1)

Knobby (71829) | more than 13 years ago | (#321059)

802.11b also has other problems. Most 802.11b client antenae are huge (the one on my Dell laptop bulges a good inch out the side, presumably to cut down on radio interference).

This will get better as companies start integrating 802.11 electronics into their products. The entire Apple product line is now capable of accepting an 802.11 airport card which uses antenae integrated into the design of the machine. Note: the tiBook apparently is having some problems with the metal case interfering with the range.. The point is, that while 802.11 has some problems, they're being worked on, and getting better.

Perfect Public Demos (1)

Webmoth (75878) | more than 13 years ago | (#321065)

"... but when's the last time a new technology's first big public demo was perfect?"

Not since the introduction of Windows98 and the infamous blue-screen-of-death and red-screen-of-Bill USB incident. What could be more perfect than the crimson face of a tyrant bent on overtaking the world?

--J

Should MS *have* to include it? (2)

Spankophile (78098) | more than 13 years ago | (#321066)

Shouldn't MS have to include bluetooth support?

By not including it, aren't they really just using their monopolistic practices to advance a technology of their choice? If bluetooth is an innovative technology, then isn't this just more proof of the same argument about the MS monopoly stifiling progress?

Lobby congress now! FOrce MS to include Bluetooth support!

Re:Never ceases to amaze me. (1)

SideshowBob (82333) | more than 13 years ago | (#321067)

The implementation differences are just details.

The broad point is that with 802.11 lots of devices like printers, faxes, etc. can be on the Internet and printed to from any device that has access priveleges. Someone made the analogy that 802.11 replaces ethernet while Bluetooth replaces serial and paralell cables. Well, who needs serial or paralell devices when all those devices are available on the network?

With Bluetooth only other Bluetooth devices can make use of those services.

The only obstacle is getting 802.11 to fit in small-profile devices like palm-tops. The upside to solving that problem is that then those devices will be on the Internet too! Sounds good to me.

Why the "Apples and Oranges" comments? (2)

Speare (84249) | more than 13 years ago | (#321070)

There are a lot of comments that are pointing out the semantic differences between 802.11b and Bluetooth. Ethernet vs Serial, or Different Uses, or Bluetooth Networking makes me sick.

My question, why split hairs? The point of both is to get two or more devices to talk by radio. The point of both is to be able to exchange data in that conversation. The point of both is to make devices interoperable.

The wifi or 802.11b approach is the extension of the network: give it an address and a standard suite of protocols, and the software support will explode. Why can't my cellphone have an IPv6 address? Why can't my mouse have an IPv6 address? Why can't my digicam or webcam or weather station or Palm XII or stereo have IPv6 addresses on my wireless home network?

Make the distinction of 'heavy' nodes and 'light' nodes go away. Sure, current 802.11b is power-hungry, but I expect there's ways of making "short haul" 802.11b work in the two meter desktop range where Bluetooth is supposed to win.

Maybe I'm missing the point. Educate me. Why shouldn't teeny handheld devices speak the same protocols that the desktop and servers speak? Why should we make yet another 'dumb device' protocol/transport like RS232, USB and Firewire? The 'dumb devices' seem to be evaporating.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

Shadow99_1 (86250) | more than 13 years ago | (#321072)

Well since you didn't use the word 'good' in that phrase, yes it does. Windows Media Player has been able to play back DVD for awhile now (or at least mine can, if I asked it to). Would you want to use it to watch DVD's? probabbly not, but it does come with Windows...

Re:Who says they have to? (2)

aron_wallaker (93905) | more than 13 years ago | (#321073)

One of the problems with supporting Bluetooth under Windows, for MS or anyone else, is that it doesn't fit neatly into MS's existing software architectures, whereas 802.11 'looks' so much like ethernet that it's a no-brainer to adopt.

Bluetooth has several protocol layers involved, and if these layers aren't standardized then you'll never get two Bluetooth applications to work on the same PC because they'll each want to install their own protocol stack. Think what would happen if every ethernet vendor and/or network application developer wrote their own TCP/IP stack....that's where Bluetooth is headed if MS snubs them.

Microsoft never really supported Bluetooth (2)

aron_wallaker (93905) | more than 13 years ago | (#321074)

Microsoft has never been a supporter of Bluetooth to start with. I was involved in Bluetooth development for a short period over two years ago, when the BT SIG was trying to complete development of the 1.0 spec's. MS was completely absent from the meetings and could not be convinced to attend. One possible reason for this was because the SIG had a rule that all intellectual property put into the standards became freely licensed to all SIG members. If I remember correctly they had actually planned to remove this rule after the 1.0 specs were finished to entice MS into joining the SIG to work on V1.1 - but then I moved off BT work so I don't know what happened.

Another possible reason is that Bluetooth is just not a PC-centric technology, and as much as some of the SIG members tried it's not a great LAN technology. From a user's point of view it might seem great to have all these devices talking to each other, but MS at the time only wanted to talk about PC issues and the investment required just so someone could hotsync without a cable probably didn't seem worth it. I have no idea where the WinCE group was - I think this was during the period when they were taking a bit of a market pounding (ie their first two releases)...I don't remember seeing them involved at all.

Disclaimer : my involvement in Bluetooth work was short and now seems long ago, so my observations may be a bit fuzzy.

Re:Technology Demonstration (1)

marx (113442) | more than 13 years ago | (#321075)

You fucking linux faggots have latched onto that term, and talk about it like it happens 10 times a day.
NT used to lock up once a day for me when I was compiling and playing mp3s at the same time. It seems to be better now that I have more memory, but come on. My office neighbor used to celebrate when there was a day his NT workstation didn't lock up.

Re:Good quote (1)

CanadaMan (121016) | more than 13 years ago | (#321076)

Nice point. Everyone seems to forget what they hate MS for: embrace and extend. What is it about Linux that threatens MS? Security and stability, right? So guess what MS is going to put in their products now? Yeah, that's right-- they're actually working on security and stability. Linux has a _lot_ of work to do if it wants to be on the desktop of Joe Consumer. Mr. T pities the fool who didn't see this coming.

Re:Good quote (2)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 13 years ago | (#321078)

If they didn't, why the need for Windows NT Service Pack 6a?
Yeah, silly Microsoft. Lord knows that Golden Haired Linux would never need any sort of patch, update, 'service pack,' or bug fixing release [slashdot.org] because the people who work on linux are special magical humans who don't make mistakes. Unlike the fine folks at Microsoft who are more normal humans, and do make mistakes. Those who can, do. Those who can't, post ignorant statements to Slashdot.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (2)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 13 years ago | (#321079)

Search your hard drive for 'dvdplay.exe' which both 98 and 2000 ship with. Not to mention Windows Media Player.

Re:The nail in the coffin for Bluetooth. (1)

blane.bramble (133160) | more than 13 years ago | (#321082)

But Bluetooth isn't (just) about computers. It's about enabling communication between devices. PDA's, phones, etc. Maybe you won't be able to use it with your Windows XXXP laptop, but you'll be able transfer data from your phone to your PDA, to your printer.

Bluetooth and 802.11b have different purposes. (2)

gaijin_ (134592) | more than 13 years ago | (#321083)

Bluetooth and 802.11b have two very different applications. The goal of Bluetooth is to connect all kinds of different mobile equipment with some speed and very high reliability. 802.11b is made for speed, and I can't see a them getting 802.11b on chip, but getting bluetooth on a chip has been the goal all along.

I think this is only microsoft being angry for not being invited along in the first place.

Bluetooth works for P2P, 802.11 doesn't. (1)

Ogerman (136333) | more than 13 years ago | (#321085)

If I recall correctly, part of the purpose of Bluetooth is that you can use your PDA to access the Internet or local services using a public 802.11-style router transceiver *OR* you can link up to other people in peer to peer fashion. This way, you can walk into a restaurant, connect to their local uplink, and order your food / pay your bill via your Bluetooth enabled PDA. Or you can easily swap files / contact info / etc. with your buddies. OR do both at the same time. 802.11 is nothing more than an Ethernet replacement. So I think MS is making a huge mistake and we can all rejoice. This could make Linux even more suited for portable devices.

Re:Bluetooth and 802.11 are for different uses (1)

north.coaster (136450) | more than 13 years ago | (#321086)

Could someone please provide a pointer to more information about the IBM transceiver that plugs into a USB port? Is this a real product or a prototype?

Thanks

Don

Re:TCP/IP again (1)

Nohea (142708) | more than 13 years ago | (#321087)

Windows for Workgroups 3.11 had a downloadable Microsoft TCP/IP driver. I used it before Win 95. However, no dialup support, only LAN.

You have to give them that credit.

I did hear a rumor at the time, if you used it, and were on the internet, and waited a REALLY long time, you could see a whole bunch of other workgroups. Never did it myself.

Sea change at Microsoft (3)

cyber-vandal (148830) | more than 13 years ago | (#321088)

However, Microsoft has a policy against adding new features in so-called service packs, intended as interim fixes between major annual releases of the operating system.

What major annual releases? XP isn't out until next year is it? And didn't Terminal Server - a fairly big deal - appear in SP6. Journos shouldn't believe everything the PR department says.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

woody_jay (149371) | more than 13 years ago | (#321089)

Well, when you think about it, M$ has been following apple including the GUI. That's what it's like when you can't come up with your own ideas. You need to take someone elses and then just learn how to market it better. Such is the philosophy, and has been the philosopy of the King over at Microsoft since the beginning of time.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

rtscts (156396) | more than 13 years ago | (#321091)

the KB layout, PCI, AGP, IDE, USB, VGA, preemptive multitasking/protected memory in a 'consumer' OS...

*yawn*

Re:Bluetooth is not in MSs interest (1)

Twiddle (160467) | more than 13 years ago | (#321093)

But M$ owns a good chunk of Ericisson. This is weird you hafta admit. I saw something about it on MS's site but I can't get there today because they are down(hahahahahaahahah).

Not surprising (4)

duvel (173522) | more than 13 years ago | (#321095)

I don't think it's surprising that Microsoft should choose not to incorporate BlueTooth capabilities in their new products. One has to remind himself that BlueTooth technologie is still far from stable.

Slashdot had a story [slashdot.org] on this only 1 week ago. Biggest problem at this time seems to be that a BlueTooth 'standard' has yet to be implemented (there is even talk of creating a new standard that would merge the 'standards' that are now set by the different manufacturers).

Without a single standard that everybody is willing to adhere to, the sad truth is that BlueTooth may have the same destiny as WAP. Gartner Group and others proclaimed WAP to be The-Future (tm) and the Solution-to-all-your-Problems (tm). When WAP showed teething problems, it was immediately dumped by those same people. This may also happen to BlueTooth, if industry watchers will again show to be unwilling to value the technologie to its merits, and not by just trying to find the 10 reasons why BlueTooth doesn't solve the world's problems.

As long as Microsoft (and any other company) is faced with these uncertainties (BlueTooth standards still under development + public acceptance and succes far from sure) then it's only logical that they are not prepared to pour money in this.

Re:Good quote (1)

zombieking (177383) | more than 13 years ago | (#321097)

"We wouldn't want to ship something that doesn't work....

If they didn't, why the need for Windows NT Service Pack 6a?

-----

Ouch... Arguments for, against. (2)

Fervent (178271) | more than 13 years ago | (#321099)

Well, I'm not a big fan of Bluetooth either, until it becomes more of a standard and less of a "good thing on paper" (remember Firewire, aka ILink, aka God knows what other marketing term they came up with?)

I have a 802.11b residential transmitter in my home and it works wonders. Fast speeds (11 Mbps), works with virtually every OS including Mac and Linux, and 128-bit encryption strength. The technology's not foolproof, but for what I do it works.

Then again, though, the whole draw to Bluetooth was using it in areas where close range contact was not only possible but essential. Like in front of a vending machine. I don't want the Pepsi machine down on the other side of the mall knowing that I'm buying from a Coke machine here. It's bad enough that I have to give up my privacy for one company (one of the cost "benefits" of Bluetooth) but two?

802.11b also has other problems. Most 802.11b client antenae are huge (the one on my Dell laptop bulges a good inch out the side, presumably to cut down on radio interference). Bluetooth, from my knowledge, can actually be imbedded pretty well in a phone. That might become a factor, considering the issues involved with 802.11b antenae ranges [slashdot.org] .

Who knows. Redmond, don't be a dick and support both anyway.

Bluetooth and 802.11b (competition) (1)

rtos (179649) | more than 13 years ago | (#321100)

For the 100th time: Bluetooth and 802.11 are not competing technologies. They each have separate and complimentary uses.

But... Bluetooth and the upcoming IEEE 802.11B [cnet.com] (note the B) are going to go head to head. It doesn't have the cool name or logo, but it does have the backing of both IEEE and Intel [zdnet.co.uk] . You may hate Intel, but they have a lot of weight to throw around.

I must admit that I was really excited about the Bluetooth standard, but I would always choose an IEEE standard over an industry consortium. I'm still ticked off that USB [zdnet.com] has gained wide acceptance.

Unrelated but worth noting: There is some chance of interference between bluetooth and 802.11 [wireless-nets.com] .

YAATM - Yet Another Anti Trade Maneuver? (2)

4im (181450) | more than 13 years ago | (#321101)

So IBM, who's been greatly supporting Linux etc., brings out a new tech - and M$ thanks them by not supporting it? This smells very fishy to me, looks more like M$ is trying to punish IBM. Guess it's yet another maneuver by them to hurt competitors, and it should be brought to the attention of whoever's working the antitrust case against M$.

I've got several computers at home, each one with tons of cables I'd love to get rid of - Bluetooth would be just the thing. IEEE 802 something for the networking part, Bluetooth to interconnect the devices, adios serial, parallel, scsi, keyboard etc. cables. There are still some technical problems? They'll be worked out, no doubt. I certainly trust Big Blue more to get this done than M$. I'd love to get to use this tech. Good thing I won't have to wait for M$...

I've seen some comments as how M$ wouldn't want to bring out sth that wasn't (yet) working - BS. They've got tons of resources, and if they only just wanted to, I bet they could have something pretty nice up & running quite soon. I've seen quite some incompetence in IT departments, but I cannot imagine M$ not to have at least some cool geeks around.

Re:Apple? (1)

thechink (182419) | more than 13 years ago | (#321102)

MS didn't follow with USB. They had full USB support in Windows 98 and that product was relased two months (June 98) before Jobs showed off the first iMac (August 98). Even some versions of Windows 95 had partial USB support. Most PCs had USB ports going back as early as 1996. And don't forget that MS along with Compaq & Intel invented USB.

What Apple did do though, was make USB the only way to connect low-speed peripherals such keyboards & mice. This helped kick start the production of USB devices. Something that was languishing before the arrival of Win98 & the iMac.

Re:Apple? (1)

thechink (182419) | more than 13 years ago | (#321103)

I can believe that. However I was going by this page [usb.org] (near the bottom) which lists MS as an original core member.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (2)

thechink (182419) | more than 13 years ago | (#321105)

MS adopted this UI because Apple was successful with it; the real reason MS dominates the market is the MS-DOS installed base, which was an accidental gift from IBM.

Yes it was a gift from IBM but not accidental. It is widely believed that Gary Kildall of Digital Research went flying when IBM came knocking making IBM to choose Microsoft. Instead Gary did meet with IBM and they sold DR's product CP/M along with Microsoft's then unheard of DOS with the first PCs. DOS sold at a much lower price than CP/M and Microsoft won the day.

What Microsoft has managed to do is hold on to and grow that market. Sometimes by using questionable means, sometimes by adopting useful technology.

Back to the GUI. MS adopted it after seeing the Apple Lisa (a huge failure for Apple). They announced Windows in 1983 (a year before the Mac appeared) and delivered version 1.0 in 1985.

So did MS adopt the GUI because Apple was successful with it? No, it was because, like Apple, they saw a future in it.

Who can blame them? (3)

otter42 (190544) | more than 13 years ago | (#321106)

I don't think they'd want to build technology into their product that they will be forced to troubleshoot and tech support for the next 5 years. They're better off to build the wireless network capability into a service pack.

Although knowing M$, they'll charge a $100 "upgrade" fee for this capability.

Re:Not surprising (3)

java_sucks (197921) | more than 13 years ago | (#321109)

WAP died because it sucked. WAP was a classic example of a "technology" which big business tried to tell the public that that wanted, but the public knew better. WAP was a sham from the start, the phone.com people are laughing all the way to the bank too. Now that the PCS industry has realized that they can't shove WAP down the throats of Joe Consumer they are moving away from it. It also shows that the Gartner Group doesn't know squat, if you have enough $$ you can have the Gartner Group rave about your stuff too.

Bluetooth might have problems but it's not because it sucks, it's just not a mature technology.

The nail in the coffin for Bluetooth. (2)

AFCArchvile (221494) | more than 13 years ago | (#321113)

So essentially, without support from Microsoft or the *nix/BSD community, Bluetooth will go the way of Betamax. Of course, IBM (Bluetooth's biggest promoter, from what I've seen) will still try to hold on, but then again, they did so with PC-DOS, OS/2, and the Aptiva. And look where those three are now.

Re:Technology Demonstration (1)

Arethan (223197) | more than 13 years ago | (#321114)

LOL! I remember that demo!
"And now I plug the USB device into the computer, Windows 98 will detect the new device and..." *BLUE SCREEN!*

Hrm... Sounds like MS is getting pretty hipocritical.

Bluetooth is not meant to replace 802.11 (1)

SCHecklerX (229973) | more than 13 years ago | (#321117)

Bluetooth and 802.11 are two entirely different things.

Bluetooth will allow all of your computer components to easily talk amongst themselves...without wires. It is also a way of doing neat things based on proximity. Car locks, anyone?

Bluetooth is also inherently more secure than 802.11. Even for people who are intelligent enough to enable 802.11's "security" features, that security is a MESS! You are better off running your wireless network in the clear, with DHCP assigned by Ethernet adaptor address and then using IPSec over the wire.

Technology Demonstration (4)

rongage (237813) | more than 13 years ago | (#321118)

Hmmm, isn't this like the one technology demonstration, given by our friend "Bill", regarding USB support for Win98?

Can anyone say "blue screen of death"?

Wireless Technologies (4)

Jas26785 (244834) | more than 13 years ago | (#321120)

If I may...

I'm a softare/hardware engineer in the RF (wireless) engineering business. Primarily, I work with embedded products, so I can tell you that I'd be willing to use both 802.11 and Bluetooth. Whichever one wins out on any individual product is entirely dependent on the requirements of the product.

Power, size and price are always the driving factors when it comes to embedded products, mainly because the products are often battery operated. RF transmit power is a major concern when it comes to power consumption, but not the only concern. Processing power (and thus, what you can handle in terms of network protocols and bandwidth) is the other major concern.

Bluetooth would be great for embedded products that don't require more than 10 meters of operating distance. Also, you don't require as much processing power for Bluetooth as the transmission speeds are much lower.

802.11, on the other hand, has higher transmission speeds AND longer distance specifications. I've used 802.11 transceivers and they pretty much require you to have access to the good old 60 Hz line power we all know and love. It is also very hard to process a 12 Mbps datastream on a microcontroller that runs at any speed less than ~200 MHz (do the math). Even a custom IC or ASIC optimized for I/O processing would consume a fair amount of power processing such a datastream. Don't expect to see 802.11b on a handheld device unless it has access to line-power a significant amount of time or is a bastardized version of 802.11.

The primary factor for Bluetooth's slow industry acceptance is the price. While it doesn't operate at 12 Mbps, it is significantly fast and, with its convoluted master-slave networking protocol, requires either a ton of engineering time or expensive "blackbox" transceivers. We are ready to adopt it as soon as a customer is willing to pay the price; so far, they've liked our custom solutions instead.

Looks promising... (1)

WirelessFreak (245617) | more than 13 years ago | (#321121)

...especially for Windows users. 802.11b will support up to 54Mbps in the unlicensed 5.8GHz spectrum. Equipment will start rolling out by the end of this summer. For once, I think Microsoft might have made a good choice here.

First launch? (1)

noz (253073) | more than 13 years ago | (#321122)

when's the last time a new technology's first big public demo was perfect?

Uhm, how about India's space hopes [indian-express.com] .

Re:Technology Demonstration (1)

TheStruuus (263229) | more than 13 years ago | (#321125)

Yea i think you're right. I remember windows 98 blue screan of death at a computer show:
http://www.cnn.com/TECH/computing/9804/20/gates.co mdex/gates.30.240.mov.

Should have given it right then i guess.

Re:802.11b is WiFi (2)

Zeinfeld (263942) | more than 13 years ago | (#321126)

i'm all for open standards, but don't you think that 802.11b needs a catchy name to have the hype that bluetooth had?

That name is WiFi. The idea being that in addition to supporting 802.11b all WiFi products should interoperate. It is a bit like the rechristening of Firewire as iLink after it turned out that many Video cameras with alledged Firewire did not work with most firewire PC boards.

Re:Or to follow up.. (2)

Zeinfeld (263942) | more than 13 years ago | (#321127)

Bluetooth is good because it can be implemented in 1 or 2 chips, with the antennae and transmitter in the chips..... so it is *cheap* to wirelessly enable a device.

That is the propaganda. However an integrated antenna is useless if the antenna is on the inside of a Faraday cage - which many if not most microprocessor based devices need to pass FCC interference tests.

The cost difference is likely to be a temporary issue. I can't see any reason that 802.11b should be vastly more expensive to produce. Ultimately the marginal cost of manufacture for both are a certain amount of processed silicon.

A PDA that only speaks BlueTooth will be useless to me, I have 802.11b in the house.

What Bluetooth propaganda comes down to is that I will buy a Bluetooth basestation for several hundred dollars to duplicate my 802.11b basestation just so I can save $5 on buying a PDA that does less and has lower range.

802.11B is an incumbent technology, Bluetooth is attempting to displace it from one sector of the market on the basis of a marginal cost advantage. I don't see that happening.

It is about mindshare (4)

Zeinfeld (263942) | more than 13 years ago | (#321128)

I think folk are missing the point here. The Microsoft announcement is all about endorsement of a technology, it has nothing to do with support for a technology or ability to use it.

People will be able to use bluetooth devices with Windows regardless of the level of Microsoft support. What Microsoft has declined to do however is to positively endorse Bluetooth and encourage people to buy Bluetooth devices. That is important because it will make it harder for Bluetooth to gain mind share and hence critical mass.

Regardless of how many slashdotters bleat that the two don't compete, the fact is they do. There is absolutely nothing Bluetooth can do that WiFi/802.11b cannot. Bluetooth's advantages of a marginal cost reduction and lower power have yet to be demonstrated.

The biggest problem with Bluetooth is that it isn't ready for prime time yet. The warring camps have not come together on a common interoperable standard. They are currenlty planning to launch two incompatible variants.

The next biggest problem is that nobody can make out a coherent case for the technology. There is absolutely no reason for my laptop to talk to my cellphone (apart from downloding the address book which already works via Ird). If my laptop wants to talk to the Internet I will get it a GPRS modem. As the glut of cellular bandwidth hits the US as it hit Europe the same type of calling plans will be available - allowing pooling of subscriptions across several phones.

Same goes for my PDA which won't be talking to my cellphone because it will be my cellphone. I would much prefer a slim calculator shaped form factor for the single handheld device I carry with me. I almost always use the headset in any case.

Having redundant technologies killed off is a good thing. There is nothing worse than having a Betamax/VHS type standoff causing companies to hedge their bets, wait to deploy etc. What Microsoft has done is a good thing, they have in effect declared that they consider one technology the winner. Rather than waiting for Bluetooth to mature to the point of actually working the market is likely to focus on using 802.11b to solve their problems.

I don't want Bluetooth to continue to die a lingering death. It is time for someone to announce that they have failed, have no reasonable prospect of success and that the situation is unlikely to change in the future. Microsoft has done this, we should hope that more companies follow their lead.

blacktoothed (4)

deran9ed (300694) | more than 13 years ago | (#321129)

Citing a former [slashdot.org] post on this topic, I'd say its only a slight bit of time before others follow suit along with MS. Especially with the downturn the markets have taken in recent months, many companies are going to be looking to conserve their funds, as opposed to blindful spending.

Although having two antennas in close proximity can be a problem, Siep said that most users won't actually place the two systems next to each other.
For someone to just base this statement with no supportive information is deadbeat. Just think of the typical comp user who doesn't understand upper level technology, and how to configure things.
When interference does occur, it manifests itself as slower transmission rather than a broken connection. Users are already conditioned to accept this, Siep said. It's the same problem that occurs with analog modems that sometimes connect at 33 kbits/second and sometimes at 28 kbits/s, and Siep believes consumers will be willing to live with the same experience in their wireless networks.
This notion that people are willing to accept a substandard product are misconceived. Think about the people who are moving off 56k connections to DSL, Cable, etc., they've moved because obviously their concerned with speed, so for these industry people to say, people will pay x amount of dollars when they know they're buying a substandard product... Who do they think theyy're kidding? Once people read about little quirks like this, they'll be likely to wait before diving into bluetooth, and if the problem isn't addressed fast, bluetooth will die entirely.

My two cents without going into the other issues in the article.

bluetooth free [antioffline.com]

Crack in the Cathedral (1)

feder (307335) | more than 13 years ago | (#321130)

Ahh, finally! Microsoft's first bad move. This is but the beginning of The Big Fall. Historicly, prententious decisions like this one are known to set off the first in a series of events that eventually will cause an empire to fall apart. Just take IBM, for example: "Bah, personal computers. People want mainframes. We know because we own this market".

People of the open-source world, unite! And lobby for Bluetooth like you never have lobbied before. Bluetooth support for Linux is already in place [axis.com] , now use it.

Re:Who says they have to? (1)

Ayende Rahien (309542) | more than 13 years ago | (#321132)

So, if MS does it, considering the lack of true BlueTooth standard, you'll all start screaming about how MS embrace & extend it.

Beside, think about it this way, if Linux, Apple, and other non-MS OS would agree on a standard, for once, it would be MS that would have to play catch-up on hardware area.

Ms is in a lose lose situation (2)

Ayende Rahien (309542) | more than 13 years ago | (#321133)

If it supports Blue Tooth in its current incernation, they will have to add a lot of things, because it's not complete yet, and you'll be angry about them for embracing & extending the technology.
If they wait for Blue Tooth to become stable, you'll be angry about them for using monopoly power to strungle technology.

Re:Bluetooth is not in MSs interest (1)

Claric (316725) | more than 13 years ago | (#321134)

I can't say I'm convinced about the security of Bluetooth. Security being an issue I guess we can understand why MS don't have interest in it.

"Hmm, Joe Hacker could sit on the grass outside an MS building holding his Bluetooth enabled laptop and hack MS through their internal Bluetooth network."

Well, that would be reason enough for me not to use it.

Claric
--

Who says they have to? (3)

isa-kuruption (317695) | more than 13 years ago | (#321135)

Who says Microsoft has to include support for every device on the market? Why are they required to include a driver for some hardware they do not necessarily want to? Do they not have the right for themselves to determine what hardware they want to support on their O/S?

If the Bluetooth companies want to write a driver for their devices, that's fine... but that doesn't mean MS MUST support the driver or the device.

On the same note, when was the last time Linus "supported" a hardware product? If I have a problem with a driver in the kernel, the first response back from the devel group is "then write a patch."

I'm sure if and when Bluetooth became popular that Microsoft will have a Compatibility Update for it or a service pack, then you restart your machine and the ability to use it at the kernel level would be there, but in NO WAY is Microsoft REQUIRED to include Bluetooth support in the first or any subsequent release of any of it's software.

Re:TCP/IP again (1)

SA3Steve (323565) | more than 13 years ago | (#321137)

You say that Microsoft is just followers with ton of cash to buy up technologies...but you use TCP/IP not being available until Windows 95 as your example...I agree that Microsoft is not innovators, but they did not have a ton of money when Windows 95 came out...that was their major breadwinner that catapulted them far above everyone else. Microsoft's majopr contributions lie in that they made computers available to mass amounts of people and in doing so, helped further the computer industry along more than most people on here would like to admit or believe.

Re:MS follows Apple's track... (1)

fast45 (414124) | more than 13 years ago | (#321140)

After reading the EETimes article I got frustrated. The article makes a point about how prevalent the 802.11b wireless technology has become and how it surprised Microsoft. Yet nowhere does it mention the word "Apple". Apple adopted the Lucent 802.11b wireless into the first iBooks that came out. Wasn't that 2 years ago? I'd be willing to be that the majority of working 802.11b wireless networks in use today are Apple systems.
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