The Bluetooth SIG is a not-for-profit organization that has overseen the development of Bluetooth standards since 1998. Founding members included representatives from Nokia, Toshiba, IBM, Intel, and Ericsson, though 400 members had joined by the end of its first year.
Most companies wishing to use Bluetooth in their products become members of the Bluetooth SIG, and today it counts more than 30,000 members. The board of directors, however, which provides oversight and serves as the SIG’s steering group, constitutes one representative from each Promoter member company, plus associate board members who serve two-year terms.
Apple was an associate board member from 2011 to 2015, after which it was elevated to Promoter member, giving it an ongoing seat on the board of directors, alongside Ericsson, Intel, Lenovo, Microsoft, Nokia, and Toshiba.
Now the Bluetooth SIG has appointed Google’s Martin Turon, a senior software architect for wireless at Google and IoT off-shoot Nest, as an associate member, alongside Ruud van Bokhorst from Philips Lighting.
“Their extensive technology, industry, and standards development experience will be incredibly valuable as Bluetooth prepares to add mesh networking capability, which holds the promise to accelerate the growth of new markets, such as building automation, sensor networks, and the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT),” noted Mark Powell, executive director of the Bluetooth SIG.
Given Google’s prominent role in mobile and, increasingly, the broader IoT sphere, it’s no surprise to see the company given a seat on the board of directors. What is perhaps more surprising is that the company wasn’t included earlier, given its dominance in the smartphone realm.