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A dual Bluetooth® headset is an electronic accessory that can interface with two different devices at once. These types of headsets use the Bluetooth® communications protocol, which is common on cell phones and other mobile products. Dual Bluetooth® connectivity eliminates the need to manually re-synchronize the headset with a device, and can save time for many users.
The Bluetooth® communications format was developed in 1994 as a wireless alternative to other data transfer methods. Devices using this protocol can be linked by a radio signal. Both data and voice can be sent through the wireless network. In order to keep a transmission private, electronics must be manually linked or “paired” using a password. Originally, Bluetooth® units were intended to be paired with only one other device at a time.
Pairing one device to another is a good way to keep nearby users from intercepting a communication. The limitation of only one link at a time can be inconvenient at many times, however. A laptop computer and a cell phone owned by the same person, for instance, can both include Bluetooth® capability. Under the traditional limit of one pairing, an individual cannot use a headset to both listen to music and remain linked to a cell phone for calls.
A dual Bluetooth® headset solves this problem. These headsets use two separate radio transceivers, each capable of pairing with a different endpoint. Both wireless links are connected to a single earpiece and microphone. This allows a user to synch the headset with two audio sources at once, and eliminates the need to manually connect every time a different device is required.
Some common situations make this capability very useful. A computer user, for instance, can listen to streaming music and then quickly take a phone call on the same headset. A dual Bluetooth® headset can also be linked to two cell phones at once. This way, a person can easily switch between business and personal lines, or even hold a conversation with two people at once.
While it can be helpful, a dual Bluetooth® headset does have some limitations. The inclusion of two internal radios does not increase the usable range of a dual Bluetooth® headset, and most wireless links are restricted to a maximum of about 330 feet (100 meters). A wireless link between two devices also creates twice the power drain. Dual headsets typically have shorter battery lives than comparable single link Bluetooth® devices.