Listen: Our Bluetooth-themed holiday Vergecast special

Happy holidays! Here is our gift for you: over an hour of audio content dedicated to Bluetooth.

If you’re lucky this holiday season, you may be given a brand-new phone, tablet, or gadget equipped with the short-range wireless standard we’ve dealt with for decades. Though it has improved significantly since its introduction in 1998, it still has a lot of room to grow. Will Bluetooth get better next year? That’s the impetus for today’s Vergecast.

Naturally, we start the show with a game. The Verge’s Nilay Patel, Alex Cranz, and Chris Welch sit in for a round of Bluetooth Jeopardy! — hosted by senior editor Sean Hollister. We’ll refresh your mind on the basics of Bluetooth and perhaps teach you a few interesting facts too. How well do you know the tech? We’ve even set up an online game board so you can play along with the show.

Jeopardy board with Bluetooth themed categories

The Jeopardy Labs board we used to play this game.
Screenshot of Jeopardy Labs

Later in the episode, the crew gets back together to discuss the state of Bluetooth, the future of the standard, and some threats that face it in the years to come. It seems that Bluetooth has maxed out its bandwidth these days, with companies adding their own codecs atop it to support better-quality audio. How much more can it be improved?

For the final segment, Nilay, Alex, and Chris are joined by Dr. Michael Foley, the Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) executive director from 2004 to 2012, to discuss the past, present, and future of Bluetooth. Dr. Foley shares the details of his role in the evolution of Bluetooth and the challenges of getting companies to adopt the standard before it became ubiquitous in every gadget.

We had a lot of fun making this episode, so we hope you enjoy it. Thank you so much to everyone who listened to the show this year. We really appreciate it. Have a happy, safe, and Bluetooth-enabled holiday. We’ll see you in 2023!

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