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By MARTIN BAKER, Associated PressTechnology that can communicate with your smartphone or tablet using Bluetooth or Wi-Fi could soon make its way to your house.
The new wireless technology, called Bluetooth Low Energy, is being tested in the US and Europe for the first time and has the potential to make Bluetooth-enabled speakers more convenient to use, enabling users to wirelessly listen to music, read emails and watch video online without needing a smartphone or a tablet.
It’s an advancement that’s been in development for years but wasn’t until recently that manufacturers have begun to test and offer Bluetooth speakers.
The technology is similar to what was first offered by Bluetooth Low energy speaker makers such as Dolby.
But it’s much more efficient and has a higher level of fidelity.
Beneath the surfaceThe technology has already caught the attention of music lovers.
The BBC’s music show The Big Weekend is running a campaign called ‘The Sound of Bleep.’
The idea is that the technology could bring music back to the living room in a way that has never been possible.
“You can play your favourite songs on a stereo system, but it would be completely unintelligible,” said Matt Pugh, executive director of the Bleep Music Project.
“The music will be the same, but the sound is much more intimate.”
Pugh said his team has tested the technology on four rooms, including one in which the sound of a human’s voice is amplified and played through speakers that are tuned to the exact frequency of the human voice.
“It’s a new type of sound, a high fidelity sound, that is being delivered to the room,” Pugh said.
“It’s being delivered through a wireless connection.”
It’s not the first wireless speaker to appear in the real world, but a number of companies are trying to capitalize on its potential.
Google has made Bluetooth-equipped speakers available for sale to the public, and some companies are offering them to consumers for a limited time.
The Bluetooth Low-energy technology was introduced in 2009 and is currently used by a handful of wireless audio and video speakers.
But the technology has been used by music makers to deliver audio that’s better than anything currently available from Bluetooth speakers or streaming services like Pandora.
The Bleep project is a nonprofit group that has been testing the technology since 2010 and is working on more Bluetooth speakers, as well as building Bluetooth speakers for other industries.
Pugh’s group is also working on a speaker that uses the same technology, but is more sensitive to the sounds of human voices.
He said he is working with manufacturers to bring the technology to consumers.
“I am very excited about the potential,” Poyns said.