Several states have passed laws banning the use of hand-held devices while driving. Fortunately, connecting a Bluetooth headset to your iPhone makes your phone call usage "hands-free," which is legal in most states. Many phones can also use Bluetooth to exchange data with another device, such as a computer. But as of March, 2011, the iPhone does not support Bluetooth data sharing between devices.
iPhone Bluetooth Specifications
As of this writing, the iPhone 4 is the most current release from Apple. The iPhone 4 uses the Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR release of Bluetooth, which is the same standard used for the iPhone 3G, and is backward-compatible with previous Bluetooth versions. This version of Bluetooth introduced improved pairing capabilities as well as better security. EDR stands for enhanced data rate, a feature first provided in version 2.0 that boosts the rate of data transfer.
Bluetooth is probably most widely known today as the wireless connecting technology that enables you to make and receive calls using a wireless headset. The iPhone supports pairing with most Bluetooth-enabled headset devices that use the Headset Profile (HSP). Virtually all Bluetooth headsets support this profile. To use one of these headsets, your iPhone must first detect and connect to your Bluetooth headset. Then you can access calling functions through the headset, or select the headset as your input device on the iPhone itself.
With the release of iOS 3.0 software, Apple enabled the use of Bluetooth's Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP). A2DP allows streaming of high-quality mono or stereo audio data between devices. This was a much-anticipated feature in the iPhone and introduced the ability to connect it to wireless headphones, wireless speakers or car audio systems that support Bluetooth. You pair your iPhone to the device, similar to the way you pair it to a headset, and then control volume on the external Bluetooth device, since the volume controls on the iPhone will be disabled.
The iPhone does not support the OBEX file transfer protocol, which is what allows two Bluetooth-enabled devices to connect and share data. Because of this, the iPhone cannot connect to other phones or computers to share files. Some approved apps on the Apple App Store enable Bluetooth data sharing, but the transfer is usually limited to transfer to other iPhones or to iPads, and they support a restricted number of file types, especially photos.
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