Bluetooth is a wireless technology standard, represented by its iconic symbol. It isn’t a corporation as many probably believe, but a global trade organization called the Bluetooth Special Interest Group with over 24,000 member companies. The Bluetooth SIG oversees the development of the standards for Bluetooth technology, as well as handling licensing and trademarks. It began in 1998 with five member companies, and that was the same year it adopted the Bluetooth name.
The name was coined by Jim Kardach, an Intel mobile computing engineer, who had the task of mediating between and bringing together those first five member companies in 1998, which consisted of Ericsson, Nokia, Toshiba, Intel, and IBM. He came up with the name for the technology after reading a novel about the Vikings and King Harald Blatand. He said from an article he wrote on the subject for the EE Times that King Blatand, “was famous for uniting Scandinavia just as we intended to unite the PC and cellular industries with a short-range wireless link.” Incidentally, the English translation for Blatand is, “Bluetooth”.
To go even further, the initials of King Harald Blatand in the runic alphabet, an Old Norse, or North Germanic language spoken during the Viking Age in Scandanavia, were used as the iconic Bluetooth symbol.
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