Bluetooth vs Wi-Fi vs Cellular – Difference and Comparison

What is Bluetooth?

Bluetooth is a wireless technology that transfers data between devices over short distances without wires by using radio frequency. Most mobile devices also have Bluetooth facilities to share data among different devices or can connect with other Bluetooth-enabled devices.

Bluetooth devices build a personal area network to share documents between devices over short distances. The transmission power of Bluetooth devices is 2.5 milliwatts within the range of about 10 meters or 33 ft. it works based on ultra-high frequency radiowaves in IMS radio bands within the frequency of 2.402 GHz to 2.48 GHz.

It is an alternative to wire connections to exchange files to nearby portable devices for connecting cellphones, music players, and wireless headphones.

What is Wi-Fi?

Wifi enables computers, smartphones, laptops, smart TVs, and other devices to connect or communicate to the internet wirelessly within a specific area. Wifi creates ease for internet users and increases compliance. You can connect your smartphones, smart TVs, and other home appliances that operate and connects with the internet by wifi without any wire.

Wifi is a commonly used wireless local area networking of devices and internet access to nearby devices that exchange data using radio waves. Wifi is the most widely used computer network globally, used in homes and offices to connect smartphones, laptops, computers, tabs, printers, smart TVs, and smart speakers to the wifi router device, which helps to connect them to the internet.

The average wifi range is about 150 feet to over 145 meters with a frequency of 2.4 GHz. If you increase the wireless fidelity (Wi-FI) frequency to 5GHz, the range will increase from 50 feet to 150 meters.

What is Cellular?

A cellular or mobile network communicates with wireless links to and from end nodes. The network is spread across “cells” of land, each supplied by a fixed-location transceiver. The cell can utilize the network coverage these base stations offer to transmit voice, data, and other sorts of content.

A cell often utilizes multiple frequencies from nearby cells to prevent interference and ensure service quality inside each cell. When connected, these cells offer radio coverage over a vast geographic area.

This makes it possible for multiple portable transceivers (such as mobile phones, tablets, laptops, pagers, etc.) to communicate with each other and fixed transceivers and telephones throughout the network by base stations, even if some of the receivers are moving through multiple cells while transmitting.

Difference Between Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Cellular

Bluetooth, wifi, and cellular networks are all wireless connections that allow devices to transfer data and connect to the internet quickly.

Bluetooth is a technology that wirelessly transfers data between different devices using radiowaves of different frequencies. Bluetooth does not offer any internet connectivity, which WI-Fi provides.

At the same time, wifi is a fast and effective wireless internet protocol that uses radiowaves and allows a wireless connection between connected devices.

On the contrary, cellular networks use cellular data of mobile phones, which are connected to phone towers that provide internet connection and enable mobile device communication. Still, the cellular network requires a data plan attached to the device. It enables smartphones, tablets, laptops, and pagers to connect via cellular data.

Comparison Between Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and Cellular

ParametersBluetoothWI-FiCellular
Range10-100 meters50-100 metersA cellular tower covers about 3-50 square miles.
Network TopologyAd hoc, minimal networks.Point to the hub.Point to the hub.
Security64-128 encryption.Symmetrical encryption.DOS, channel Jamming, etc.
ComplexityHighHighHigh
Frequency2.4 GHz.2.4GHz to 5GHz.600 MHz to 39GHz.

References

  • McDermott-Wells, Patricia. “Bluetooth scatternet models.” IEEE potentials 23, no. 5 (2004): 36-39.
  • Henry, Paul S., and Hui Luo. “WiFi: what’s next?.” IEEE Communications Magazine 40, no. 12 (2002): 66-72.
  • Shafiq, Muhammad Zubair, Lusheng Ji, Alex X. Liu, Jeffrey Pang, Shobha Venkataraman, and Jia Wang. “The first look at cellular network performance during crowded events.” ACM SIGMETRICS performance evaluation review 41, no. 1 (2013): 17-28.