Bluetooth had another successful year in 2006 and it will have continued success in 2007, led by its increasing penetration into mobile phones, reports In-Stat. However, market growth for Bluetooth products is beginning to slow and it will see some complications arising from integration trends and new Bluetooth standards hitting the market, the high-tech market research says.

The market for Bluetooth chips is also in flux. “The Bluetooth silicon market is beginning to see some consolidation, as larger silicon vendors add new capabilities, such as Wi-Fi and GPS to their chip portfolios, either by internal development or acquisition,” says Brian O’Rourke, In-Stat analyst. “The goal is to create combined radio silicon that is being demanded by mobile phone vendors.”

Recent research by In-Stat found the following:

• Growth of Bluetooth devices will increase by 34 percent in 2007, slowing from the recent past.
• Wireless chip companies are seeking to offer integrated radio chips with Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, GPS and FM.
• New low power and data rate Bluetooth standards will emerge over the next two years.
• According to recently conducted In-Stat surveys, France, Germany and the UK have the highest percentage of those extremely or very familiar with Bluetooth. Korea and Japan had the lowest percentages, while the US was in the middle.