Why isn't Bluetooth utliized more for wireless devices?

Anecdotal I know, but I've noticed over the years that most Windows laptop users don't ever use the included Bluetooth adapter.  Most wireless peripherals that I've dealt with end up having some kind of included USB dongle.  Why is that?  It seems strange to me that "premium" keyboards and mice use their own dongle as opposed to the Bluetooth adapter which just seems to go to waste.  Another example of this is my Bluetooth headset.  I have a very nice Plantronics Voyager Legend and despite using Bluetooth to connect to my phone and old game console, I have to plug a dongle into my PC to get the headset to work with my PC.  Can anyone comment on this?  It seems like such a waste of a proven technology if many wireless devices don't even bother to use it.
StriderHiryuNetwork EngineerAsked:
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
I use and will only use a Bluetooth mouse for my laptop. Bluetooth has much shorter range than Wi-Fi but about the same range as the little RF bugs used for Keyboard and mouse pairs. I have this on my Desktop to reduce wires and I have not seen Bluetooth for this application.

There are not many Bluetooth mice around so I do agree with your point.

Logitech makes a Bluetooth mouse with AA battery good for 3 months.
Microsoft makes a Bluetooth mouse with AAA battery good for about 3 weeks.

There isn't much more.

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I have read about a serious security issue with non-Bluetooth keyboards where the communication can easily be read at quite a distance.  That gives another reason to use Bluetooth.

My best guess is that history and cost are the big reasons Bluetooth keyboards and mice are not more common.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Logitech put out a fix for their RF bugs which I have applied. Hopefully that has worked.
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David Johnson, CD, MVPOwnerCommented:
Not many desktops come with bluetooth by default and just about all computers come with USB ports.. The power of the default won here

For a while Bluetooth mice/keyboards were the rage
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
True. Almost all laptops have Bluetooth, but not many Bluetooth mice. I really cannot explain that one because a Bluetooth mouse is vastly more convenient.
The reason bluetooth is less convenient is because most need a battery change at 1.5 months and it's not as consistently supported on Windows.  I see more people use those logitech RF mice and keyboard more frequently, because it just works.  With the RF dongle, the Logitech wireless gets consistent signal support.  Early Windows Bluetooth mice were also inconsistently supported.  One Mouse would work on some laptops and not others.  Another mouse would work on the other laptop but not the same one as the first mouse.  This probably soured people's perception of Bluetooth as a useful standard.

If you go to the Mac world, Bluetooth is heavily supported and works well, but the batteries just drain much, much faster on than with the much lower frequency, lower powerd RF dongle.   Bluetooth mice and keyboards can reach 20-30 ft in my tests.  I've test some bluetooth headphone that can reach 40ft-50ft.  Bluetooth Mice are energy hogs that use 2 AA cells and last 1-3 months.  Compared that to the even less secure Logitech RF mice.  They only need a single AA or AAA cell and can last 6-12 months.

If you're in any industry that needs real security, you don't use wireless anything.  Bluetooth opens up communications to your system.  As with any Wireless technology, it's considered a security problem because it's basically a broadcast medium.   https://www.inc.com/joseph-steinberg/are-your-bluetooth-devices-secure-maybe-not.html
Dr. KlahnPrincipal Software EngineerCommented:
CompProbSolv is on the money, in my opinion.  Bluetooth has been followed since its inception by security issues, one of the most recent being that devices can now be infected just by being turned on and in range of a hostile device.  Because of this bad reputation, which again imo is well deserved, sensible people don't use it.

In all my devices either the Bluetooth interface is (a) disconnected or removed, or (b) disabled at the operating system level.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
We all have different ways of working. Bluetooth is working much better for me than you describe above. I would not use it if it had all the problems you have.
@Dr. Klahn:
We're talking about different security issues here.  I'm not aware of them for Bluetooth, but that is more because of my limited experience there.

My comment was about how one can easily and inexpensively read keystrokes from a non-Bluetooth keyboard from a significant distance.  My understanding is that the only "security" with these is that the manufacturer of the wireless chips didn't publish the communication standard.  Once someone figured it out (and produced hardware and software to the standard), it became very visible and readable.
Bluetooth has had known hacks and security issues just like the RF keyboards and mice.  You can read any of these device at a significant distance with a proper single booster and more sensitive directional antenna.  The boosted signal may just be illegal to use in your jurisdiction, but that won't stop espionage or anyone that really wants your data.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
I have had several BT updates and I have had several Logitech updates. I just keep these devices updated as vendors read the news as well as us.  No issues here with updated drivers.
Seth SimmonsSr. Systems AdministratorCommented:
No comment has been added to this question in more than 21 days, so it is now classified as abandoned.

I have recommended this question be closed as follows:

-- John (https:#a42512924)
-- David Johnson CD MVP (https:#a42512979)
-- serialband (https:#a42514247)
-- serialband (https:#a42513045)

If you feel this question should be closed differently, post an objection and the moderators will review all objections and close it as they feel fit. If no one objects, this question will be closed automatically the way described above.

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