Android Bluetooth Smart Ready support confirmed, perhaps in time for Android 4.3?

Google and the Bluetooth Special Interest Group have announced that Android will soon include native support for Bluetooth Smart Ready and Bluetooth Smart devices.

The group that is responsible for pushing the Bluetooth standard says an update should be available in the "coming months".

This means that Android will be able to better support Bluetooth Smart accessories like the Fitbit Flex or the Pebble smart watch in the future - something that iOS, Windows and the BlackBerry platforms already allow.

The announcement, which was rumoured to be part of a bigger Android 4.3 update (that hasn't yet happened), is likely to be welcomed by the slew of companies launching wearable gadgets.

"Working with the big OS providers to offer native support for Bluetooth Smart Ready has been a major initiative within the Bluetooth SIG - we're thrilled to welcome Android to the family," said Suke Jawanda, CMO of the Bluetooth SIG.

It's the hardware and software support that enables Bluetooth Smart Ready devices to connect seamlessly with the billions of Bluetooth devices in use today, and the exploding new market of Bluetooth Smart app-cessories.

With today's announcement, Google joins Apple, Microsoft and BlackBerry in providing native software support. That's great news for phone and tablet manufacturers, application developers and ultimately, consumers who count on Bluetooth to connect more of their technology.

Developers will be able to use the new Android API to feed data collected from Bluetooth Smart appcessories, as Bluetooth SIG is calling them, such as fitness monitors or medical devices, to their apps running on Bluetooth Smart Ready products, like smartphones or tablets.

Once the update is released, any new Bluetooth-enabled phone or tablet running Android and featuring a dual mode Bluetooth radio chip will be Smart Ready.