Bluetooth-compliant service providers will be able to charge for services they've never dreamed of delivering because people will be using their phones for activities besides making phone calls. Such portable, "crossover" devices could revolutionize the way we communicate by changing how we interact with our electronic and Internet appliances. Some Bluetooth adopters already have demonstrated e-payment systems, where a Bluetooth-enabled cell phone can communicate with a vending machine and debit the transaction to the users cell phone bill, removing the need for cash and even foreign exchange, at least in the GSM world.
A typical crossover device could be a mobile phone that doubles as an MP3 player, using the same digital signal processing (DSP) that supports the communications protocol requirements of a telephone to play back MP3 or other digital audio formats in offline mode. Where sufficient DSP power is available, the MP3 player could also decode streaming digital audio received as a digital data stream in a GSM phone. If the mobile phone contains a Bluetooth transceiver, the digital audio files could be uploaded from a PC in addition to the telephone network. Already, cell-phone manufacturers have announced Bluetooth MP3 add-ons for cell phones.
Another example of a crossover product is a Bluetooth-enabled MP3 ASIC for the home entertainment market, which would enable the creation of a "flashless" portable audio player, which would eliminate the most costly portion of the player. Although proprietary 2.4-GHz audio/video distribution systems exist, the advantage of Bluetooth in this application is that the same 1-MHz channel can also transmit commands back to the audio source, making it possible to change the audio channel, for instance, to listen to voicemail messages on an answering machine.
Also, a PDA platform could be upgraded to support Bluetooth and cellular telephony, allowing the user to access the Internet over the phone or access files from a desktop, thus reducing local storage requirements. Such a mobile computing platform could also run MP3 or digital video applications for entertainment when required.