The differences among Bluetooth 4.0, 5.0 and 5.2 

Introduction to Bluetooth 5.0


Bluetooth 5.0 is a Bluetooth technology standard proposed by the Bluetooth Technology Alliance in 2016 (officially launched on April 7, 2017), Bluetooth 5.0 for low-power devices speed has a corresponding increase and optimization, Bluetooth 5.0 combined with Wi-Fi for the indoor location to assist in positioning, improve transmission speed and increase the effective working distance.

Main functions

  1. Bluetooth 5.0 has a wider coverage and four times faster speed for low-power devices.
  2. Bluetooth 5.0 will add an indoor positioning assistance function, combined with Wi-Fi can achieve the accuracy of less than 1 meter in indoor positioning.
  3. The maximum transmission speed of the low-power mode is 2Mbps, which is twice as fast as the previous 4.2LE version.
  4. Effective working distance up to 300 meters, 4 times that of the previous 4.2LE version.
  5. Add navigation function, which can achieve 1 meter indoor positioning.
  6. To cope with the needs of mobile clients, it has lower power consumption and is compatible with older versions.

Bluetooth 5.0 and 4.0 comparison

Faster transmission speed

The Bluetooth 4.2 standard has a maximum transmission speed of 1Mbps, while Bluetooth 5.0 has a maximum transmission speed of 2Mbps. The faster transmission speed will double the data transfer rate while improving spectrum and energy efficiency, significantly reducing power consumption, and enabling new higher throughput applications such as audio, with single packet data expanding from 20 bytes to a maximum of 256 bytes. This improvement will make Bluetooth a better experience in medical, fitness, outdoor, sports, and other product applications. For example, the most popular intelligent voice services, the voice data based on Bluetooth 5.0 transmission, twice the speed of transmission will be strong to ensure the stability and accuracy of the transmitted data, thus improving the accuracy of voice recognition, and thus improve the accuracy of user feedback and user experience.

The Bluetooth 5.0 has four times the coverage range of Bluetooth 4.2, which is about 300 meters range.

This means that users wearing headphones can be away from their phones, for large indoor venues, such as stadiums, grand villas, theaters, etc.. Users will not be limited by distance, thus allowing users to expand their range of activities and enhance the user experience.

Bluetooth 5.0 broadcast communication capacity has been upgraded from 31 bytes in Bluetooth 4.2 to 255 bytes. The enhanced broadcast capability will result in better beacons to create more location-based indoor positioning services and navigation services without pairing and connectivity for data transmission, indoor positioning accuracy is less than 1 meter, and improved indoor positioning accuracy features.

For example, when users are shopping in a large shopping mall, they will be able to navigate within the mall with the indoor positioning function of Bluetooth 5.0, effectively improving the accuracy of shopping and reducing the time and physical effort wasted to find the place.

Lower power consumption, greater compatibility

In response to the needs of mobile IoT, its lower power consumption and is compatible with the old Bluetooth version. Major semiconductor manufacturers will design new MCU for Bluetooth 5.0 standard to meet the SIG specification, Nordic launched the nRF52840 and nRF52832, TI Semiconductor launched the CC2640R2F both support Bluetooth 5.0. From the hardware characteristics, the CC2640R2F’s comprehensive sleep power consumption is 10 times lower than Nordic’s nRF52840 and nRF52832, which will be very significant for wearable medical, outdoor devices, smart travel, smart home, and other industries.

Lower power consumption means that when the user is fully charged once, there will be longer usage time, or the same usage time, reducing the number of times the user has to recharge, greatly facilitating the user’s use and never having to worry about taking it out to play without electricity.

Bluetooth 5.2 and Bluetooth 5.0 difference

The new features in Bluetooth 5.2 include LE Isochronous Channels, Enhanced ATT, and LE Power Control. The following is a brief description of each of these three new features.

LE Isochronous Channel

This is the core technology supporting the next generation Bluetooth audio, the previous version of low power Bluetooth only supports a connection-oriented asynchronous communication link (ACL) and non-connection mode broadcast link, the former is applied to peripheral devices (such as watches) and the central device (such as cell phones) between the two-way data transmission, the latter is applied to Beacon devices one-way broadcast information and Mesh network. To achieve the next generation of LE-based Bluetooth audio version 5.2 defined LE Isochronous Channels, including the Connected Isochronous Stream transmission channel in Connected mode and Broadcast Isochronous Stream transmission channel in Broadcast mode. The LE synchronous channels provide the foundation for the next generation of Bluetooth audio with Multi-Stream Audio and Audio Sharing applications based on broadcast audio streams. According to version 5.2 of the core specification, a synchronization group can include up to 31 different synchronized audio streams, in the broadcast synchronization mode can be achieved within the communication range of the unlimited number of audio receivers simultaneously listening to the shared audio stream.

A new communication protocol layer, the Synchronous Adaptation Layer (ISOAL), is defined in the Low Power Bluetooth Controller to implement the LE synchronous channel. ) for interconversion. The basic principle is that the length of SDUs is much longer than that of PDUs, so when sending synchronous data, it is necessary to split and convert an SDU into multiple PDUs and modulate the RF signal for transmission, and in turn, when receiving, it is necessary to reassemble multiple PDUs into SDUs and transmit them to the upper layer.

Enhanced ATT

Bluetooth 5.2 version of the ATT protocol has been improved (Enhanced Attribute Protocol), used to quickly read the attribute value, this new function will improve the efficiency of information communication based on the ATT protocol, achieve fast service discovery (Fast Service Discovery), and other functions. It is foreseen that the Fast Service Discovery function will be applied in the next generation of Bluetooth audio technology to realize the fast exchange of relevant service information between audio devices.

LE Power Control

Bluetooth version 5.2 defines a bi-directional power control protocol (LE Power Control) for low-power Bluetooth that can be used to implement a variety of application scenarios, helping to further reduce power consumption and improve the stability and reliability of device connections while maintaining connectivity.


  1.  The transmission speed is different: Bluetooth 5.0 compared to Bluetooth 4.2 version, can bring twice the data transmission speed, in the data transfer capacity is to improve 800%.
  2.  The working distance is different: Bluetooth 5.0 compared to Bluetooth 4.2 version, bandwidth (transmission speed) from 1Mbps to 2Mbps, the transmission distance increased to 4 times stronger, that is, the theoretical effective working distance of 300 meters.
  3.  The broadcast packets are different: Bluetooth 5.0 compared to Bluetooth 4.2 version, can broadcast 255Byte packets, no longer 31Byte, thus reducing the loss of transmission efficiency due to the interference in the 2.4GHz band.
  4.  Compared to Bluetooth 4.2, Bluetooth 5.0 can not improve the sound quality, the power consumption is limited, stability still has an impact, etc.. Products with Bluetooth 5.2 will have a pair of multiple Bluetooth connections, more stable connection, longer life, and the improvement of sound quality.