Linksys Bluetooth USB adapter

While mobile phone and PDA manufacturers are selling the wonders of Bluetooth, the likelihood is that your laptop doesn't feature it. Apart from Apple who seem to be ahead of the game, laptops and desktop machines with inbuilt Bluetooth are far and few between.

A number of manufacturers are tackling this problem. Logitech and Microsoft have opted for the keyboard route offering hubs along side mice for example. Linksys, however, has taken a different tack and rather than bundle it with some other device has created a unit no bigger than your standard USB memory stick that just offers Bluetooth connectivity to any device with a USB socket.

Installation is simple. Install the accompanying software and plug in the module. Not hard and not very difficult. After a quick reset a Bluetooth logo appears on your desktop toolbar and then all you need to do is plug in the unit in to a spare USB socket. Realising that said socket maybe behind the back of a computer under a desk, Linksys has bundled in an extension cable in the box.

In tests everything worked well and within minutes we were connecting to our Bluetooth enabled phone and surfing the web as if it had always been. The USB key includes a small antenna to boost performance and we could easily hold a connection over a 10 metre area- ample for most uses of the technology.

Verdict

This is technology at its finest. It sees a problem, addresses that problem and works without hassle without trying to sell you something else at the same time. Your laptop or desktop may not be state of the art featuring all the latest protocols and gadgets, however this little unit will make your life easier if you are or plan to be a Bluetooth user.