Where Did the Name Bluetooth Come From? Dale Hansen, Practice Administrator



Family Hearing & Balance Center was adjusting my hearing aids, and Dr. Reikowski was asking me if I was hearing on the phone okay. I told him it has been a struggle (me thinking “no hearing aids” and the phone up to my ear). He asked again (him thinking that I had my hearing aids in and the phone was streaming straight to my hearing aids). You see, hearing aids today have Bluetooth capability so that one can connect to a phone without wires. Once we landed on the same page, and I understood what he was asking, he was able to make the adjustments so that I could understand what I was hearing. The good doctor made sure the wireless connection was working as it was intended.


As I sat there and watched him work, I wondered what Bluetooth is exactly? I knew it is a radio wave, but why the name Bluetooth? So, if I was wondering maybe others could be wondering as well, and so I researched it.

Here you go.

Why the name Bluetooth?:

In 1996, three industry leaders, Intel, Ericsson, and Nokia, met to plan the standardization of this short-range radio technology to support connectivity and collaboration between different products and industries.

During this meeting, Jim Kardach from Intel suggested Bluetooth as a temporary code name. Kardach was later quoted as saying, “King Harald Bluetooth…was famous for uniting Scandinavia just as we intended to unite the PC and cellular industries with a short-range wireless link.”

Bluetooth was only intended as a placeholder until marketing could come up with something really cool.

Who was this King?:

Surprisingly, the name dates back more than a millennia to King Harald “Bluetooth” Gormsson who was well known for two things:

  • Uniting Denmark and Norway in 958.
  • His dead tooth, which was a dark blue/grey color, and earned him the nickname Bluetooth.

So, it seams, Mr. Kardach from Intel knew enough history to affect the future with his naming of a new technology. He meant for it to be a placeholder, but it stuck…without question.



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