Apple Supplier LG Innotek has Developed the World's Smallest Bluetooth Module for things like AirPods Pro & future IoT devices
Apple's 2018 suppliers list shows that six LG-Innotek plants in Korea have done work for Apple. LG Innotek is responsible for supplying the camera module for various iPhone 11 models and it's expected that this will extend through to iPhone 12 models as well. Apple has a long established relationship with LG Innotek and in 2018 it was rumored that Apple was to invest in a new 3-D sensing camera module for iPhones and iPad Pro. Today, an interesting LG breakthrough was announced.
According to a Korean media report, LG has developed the world's smallest Bluetooth module that is the size of a grain of rice. Because it has Bluetooth capability, it is expected to be useful making wireless earphones, smart bands, and lighting smaller and have them part of the Internet of Things (IoT). Of course making wireless earphones is likely to translate to AirPods Pro for Apple.
LG Innotek has developed a Bluetooth module that is 6mm and 4mm in width and length respectively. Its latest product is the world’s smallest Bluetooth module. Its size is also three-fourths of that of Japanese modules that had been the world’s smallest Bluetooth module. Based on high precision and high integrated technologies, it includes 20 or so components such as communication chip, resistor, and inductor which is quite remarkable.
Although it's now the world’s smallest module, its telecommunications performance is improved by 30% compared to current modules. While current modules may experience disconnection in Bluetooth connection due to a wall or an obstacle, LG Innotek’s new Bluetooth module is able to send and receive data without any issue even if there are many obstacles.
In addition, the module is also applied with LG Innotek’s own “antenna integrated” technology. This technology hides Bluetooth antenna inside of a module and it improves telecommunications performance by maximizing the area of antenna.
A Bluetooth module is a component that allows near field communication between a PC and its speakers and a smartphone and its wireless earphones. As a result, it plays a key role in having objects be part of the IoT that is based on exchange of data between things in real time.
Although Apple's AirPods Pro is the likely product that could use Innotek's invention, technically speaking, LG Innotek's Bluetooth module could find it's way into a future Apple Watch. Innotek noted that they're currently looking to work with healthcare companies that make blood sugar measuring patches and smarthome device makers for lighting and more. If Apple Watch uses the new Bluetooth module, then theoretically diabetics that use these measuring patches would be able to monitor their blood sugar levels with ease working with their Apple Watch. This feature may pop-up at some point in the future, so stay tuned.
For now, Apple's AirPods Pro is likely the first targeted Apple device for Innotek's new Bluetooth module. Of course timing to market is another matter and that's unknown at this time.