Study Finds No Bluetooth-802.11 Interference

A new field study has found that Bluetooth and 802.11b wireless local area networks can co-exist without interfering with each other’s operation.

The study, released Tuesday, was conducted by The Pennsylvania State University’s Applied Research Laboratory and Wireless Infotech Education Services. Both technologies use parts of the same unlicensed spectrum and there has long been concern that the technologies will interfere with each other.

However, the groups said that the test results showed that the range of both Bluetooth and 802.11b devices stayed the same no matter how close they were to each other. The tests were conducted in a large manufacturing facility.

The tests found that the range of the 802.11 be system was about 284 feet whether or not Bluetooth devices were present. The range of Bluetooth devices was about 64 feet with our without the 802.11b devices.

However, the two groups that conducted the test agreed that more tests are necessary to cover more types of conditions in the field.

“The results of this initial test are important because Bluetooth and 802.11 technologies offer tremendous potential for the wireless networking world,” said Todd Snyder, CEO and founder of Wireless Infotech Education Services. “However, for the potential to be fully utilized the marketplace must completely understand the technical facts versus the marketing hype.”

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