Bluetooth in China: What a Difference a Year Makes - Page 2

: What China Has to Gain">

Abracadabra. One month later, the Standardization Administration of China announced it would overhaul the nations technical standards to conform with the WTO/TBT (World Trade Organizations Agreement on Technical Barriers to Trade). The Chinese Standardization Administration moved WAPI to the back burner.

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Get the details on how the WAPI dispute was resolved.

Chinas cooperation with the Bluetooth Sig is the latest show of Chinas willingness to join with the world rather than hide behind its Great Wall. One look at the market shows just how much more the country has to gain than to lose by cooperating with the West.

China is poised to become the worlds largest manufacturer of … well, just about everything. And the mobile market, where Bluetooth shines, is in the process of exploding.

According to Chinas National Development and Reform Commission, the country already manufactures more than 35 percent of the worlds mobile phones. There are 1.5 billion television sets and 2.5 billion telephones in use in the Chinese market, 330 million mobile-phone subscribers, more than 79 million Internet users and an automobile market that is red hot.

Foley said that he believes MIIs embrace of Bluetooth will not only "allow them to be more competitive in the world market," but that the Chinese market is "critical" to the SIG. Bluetooth is poised to become the venue of short-range communications in devices used in homes and automobiles. Presently, there is a huge demand for Bluetooth to provide hands-free mobile phone functions in automobiles.

"It is projected that China will move into the No. 3 slot in the worldwide production of automobiles, supplanting Germany," Foley said. Japan and the United States hold the top two slots.

Chinese manufacturers have been using the Bluetooth standard but they receive no local support. Bluetooth SIG presently has more than 3,400 members. Just over 160 of them are in China.

According to Foley, the chief advantage of Bluetooth being adopted as a national standard in China is that the Chinese government will localize Bluetooth tools and documentation to the Chinese market. "Just having a translated version of the specification will make the technology approachable for many companies," said Foley.

The Bluetooth license in China allows the Institute to "use, copy, publish, distribute and translate, but not to modify or sublicense" the Bluetooth specification while making the determination. The move, said Mike Foley, technical director of the Bluetooth SIG, "will make the technology easier for engineers and companies in China that are OEM-ing products."

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