Apple's new iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks software will feature major Bluetooth enhancements, offering deeper integration with Bluetooth-connected accessories, according to the Bluetooth Special Interest Group.
The Bluetooth SIG - the controlling body of the Bluetooth standard that collaborates with more than 18,000 companies worldwide - certifies products for manufacturers that want to include the short-range technology. It announced on Wednesday that Apple would soon allow Bluetooth-connected devices to use Notification Center, among other things.
The group elaborated in a press release on its website: "Apple revealed iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks will natively support the latest version of the Human Interface Device profile for Bluetooth Smart, Air Drop, which uses Bluetooth Smart technology to securely discover and connect devices for file sharing, and its Application State Preservation and Restoration services and Apple Notification Center Service for Bluetooth Smart accessories."
In other words, Apple will fully integrate Bluetooth into iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks. This will encourage and streamline the development of apps, peripherals and accessories - such as MFi game controllers - that use Bluetooth connectivity.
Calling the Bluetooth integration "unprecedented," the Bluetooth SIG further said Apple has raised standards with its effort. However, the California company has been noticeably bolstering Bluetooth Smart capabilities in many of its products since the introduction of the iPhone 4S in 2011.
“This sets the table for some incredible innovation developers can bring to market,” wrote Suke Jawanda, Bluetooth SIG CMO, in a blog post. “A lot of this is deeper plumbing level innovation in the OS empowers developers to create new use cases to make life better for consumers—from the novel to the life-saving and everything in between."
Jawanda gave an example where a sports app could seamlessly push an alert to a Bluetooth Smart watch every time a team scored. Users obviously benefit from this functionality because they would spend less time checking their smartphones for updates and more time living.
Developers who want to make use of the latest Bluetooth enhancements in iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks can check out the Bluetooth Application Accelerator for more detailed implementation and developer guidelines.