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Bluetooth Vs WiFi – What’s the difference?

Intro

Hello everyone. In this lesson we’re going to talk about the difference between Bluetooth and Wi-Fi. Now both of these are radio frequency technologies that are used for wirelessly connecting electronic devices. And certain devices will have both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi functionality built into them. Now, both of these do have certain things in common, but there are also some differences.

ParameterBluetoothWifi
Frequency2.4 GHz2.4, 3.6, 5 GHz
PurposeIt is used for short-range device-to-device communication.Local area networking and internet access.
RangeUpto 30 feetsSeveral hundred feets
Data Transfer RateUpto 2 MbpsUpto 1 Gbps
BandwidthLow ( 800 Kbps )High (11 Mbps )
Power ConsumptionLowHigh
SecurityLess SecureMore Secure
CostLess ExpensiveMore Expensive
Specifications authorityBluetooth SIGIEEE, WECA
Year of development19941991
ApplicationsPeripheral device connectivity, IoT and wearable devicesBroad wireless networking, internet access.

What is Bluetooth

Bluetooth was created to get rid of the hassle of dealing with wires and cables. Bluetooth is a low power wireless technology that uses a short range radio that provides a way to connect nearby devices to each other. Bluetooth devices will have a computer chip inside of them that will broadcast a signal so that other Bluetooth devices can connect to them, which is known as pairing, and when the devices are paired, it will then be able to exchange information between them.

Now, the most common use for Bluetooth is for wireless audio streaming, such as pairing your cell phone to wireless earbuds or an external speaker. It can also be used for pairing headphones to a TV, or pairing a wireless keyboard and mouse to a tablet or computer. But one of the most common uses is pairing your cell phone to your car’s audio system, which enables hands free use when you’re on the phone while driving. And the range of Bluetooth is approximately 30ft or 10m.

What is WiFi

Wi-Fi is a wireless technology that uses radio waves that allows devices such as desktop computers, laptops, tablets, and cell phones to be able to connect wirelessly to the internet. And the most common way that Wi-Fi devices access the internet is by connecting to a Wi-Fi router. Wi-Fi routers will have a connection to an internet service provider that will broadcast a Wi-Fi signal so that nearby devices can connect to the signal and grant them internet access. And in addition to internet access, these devices can be configured to exchange information between them by creating a network and, depending upon the surrounding environment, Wi-Fi has a range anywhere from 100 to 300ft.

Differences

So what are the differences between Bluetooth and Wi-Fi? Well, the main difference is that Bluetooth is for connecting devices to each other to exchange data, and Wi-Fi is used to connect devices to the internet.

And another difference is range and speed. Bluetooth has a slower transfer rate and a shorter range, and the main reason for this is power. Bluetooth uses less power than Wi-Fi, so even though it sacrifices in range and speed, it also has an advantage with longer battery life with less frequent charging, which allows Bluetooth devices to be manufactured in a smaller size that doesn’t require large batteries. But Wi-Fi, on the other hand, is faster than Bluetooth and has an approximate ten times longer range.

Now, both Bluetooth and Wi-Fi operate at 2.4GHz, but the thing is a lot of other devices also operate at 2.4GHz, such as microwaves and cordless phones, and this could interfere with wireless signals. But Bluetooth is less vulnerable to interference because it uses a technology called frequency hopping spread spectrum, which uses a method of transmitting signals in a pattern that only the transmitting and receiving devices know. The signal hops between 79 different channels and changes channels 1600 times per second, which makes Bluetooth highly resistant to interference when compared to Wi-Fi.

And Bluetooth devices are also simpler to connect to because there’s no password required. So, for example, let’s say you wanted to pair Bluetooth earbuds to your cell phone so you would just power on the earbuds, and then you would turn on Bluetooth on your cell phone. Then in your device settings, on your phone, you just click on earbuds when they appear and then you’re connected.

Final Thoughts

Comparing Bluetooth vs Wifi. These are radio frequency technologies that are used for wirelessly connecting electronic devices. Bluetooth is for connecting devices to each other. And Wifi is for connecting devices to the internet.

Darren

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