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New Bluetooth Auracast broadcast audio could change the sound of TV

Technology enables viewers to share the audio from their laptop, smartphone or tablet with others; or listen to silent TVs in public spaces

The Bluetooth Special Interest Group (SIG) is launching Auracast broadcast audio, which enables an audio transmitter, such as a TV, smartphone, or laptop, television to deliver audio to an unlimited number of nearby Bluetooth audio receivers, including speakers, earbuds, or hearing devices.

“The launch of Auracast broadcast audio will trigger another massive change in the wireless audio market,” said Mark Powell, CEO of the Bluetooth SIG. “The ability to broadcast and share audio using Bluetooth technology will reshape personal audio and enable public venues and spaces to deliver audio experiences that will improve visitor satisfaction and increase accessibility.”

The technology will enable viewers who are watching a TV programme or film on a smartphone, laptop or tablet to share the audio with family or friends via their own Auracast enabled Bluetooth earbuds or hearing device.

“The ability to pair your smartphone to your earbuds or headphones using Bluetooth technology has brought new levels of enjoyment and convenience to personal audio and is now a part of the fabric of our lives,” said Zeng Xuezhong, SVP and president of Smart Phone Department, Xiaomi Corporation.

“The introduction of Auracast broadcast audio will enable us to move from personal wireless listening experiences to shared wireless listening experiences, unlocking the full potential of wireless audio and bringing even more value and delight to our customers.”

Audiences can also use the technology to hear televisions in public spaces, such as airports, gymnasiums, restaurants, and waiting rooms where anyone using the Auracast technology will be able to hear what’s on the screen, said the organisation.

The Bluetooth specifications that define Auracast broadcast audio are part of the Bluetooth LE Audio specification suite and are expected to be released within the next few months