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Bluetooth® Qualification FAQ

Ensure device interoperability

Frequently asked questions About Bluetooth Qualification

Why qualify/declare with Bluetooth SIG?

The Bluetooth Qualification Process promotes interoperability by requiring members to confirm compliance to specifications through testing and documentation. If a company is making available a product that implements Bluetooth® technology and/or uses any of the Bluetooth® trademarks (including the word “Bluetooth®”), it must become a Bluetooth SIG member and complete the Bluetooth Qualification or Declaration Process.

What is the Compliance Program?

The Bluetooth SIG administers a process for members to demonstrate and declare that the products they build, brand, or otherwise represent as their own, are compliant with the requirements of the Bluetooth® license agreements companies sign when they become a member of the SIG. The two licensing agreements are:

  • Bluetooth Patent & Copyright License Agreement - a reciprocal license between each Bluetooth SIG member to the IP that each member owns that is “necessary” for Bluetooth® technology
  • Bluetooth Trademark License Agreement—a license between the Bluetooth SIG (owner of the Bluetooth® trademark) and each member authorizing use of the Bluetooth® trademarks

Are there any situations where I do not need to qualify my product?

If you are a retailer or supplier who is simply selling or distributing another company’s Bluetooth® product and you are not branding or representing the product as your own, you do not need to qualify the product.

What happens if I don’t qualify my product?

If you do not qualify your product, you become subject to enforcement action. Read the updated policy where we outline the escalation schedule. If no corrective actions are taken, your Bluetooth SIG membership could be suspended or revoked.

Who is licensed to use the Bluetooth® trademarks?

When a company applies for membership, they agree to the membership agreements including the Bluetooth Trademark License Agreement. This allows a member company to use the Bluetooth® word mark and logos with fully qualified and listed products. A company planning on selling a Bluetooth® enabled product under their own company/brand name must:

  • Be a member to be properly licensed to use the trademarks, word mark or logos
  • Properly qualify and/or list their product(s) to comply with the Bluetooth Trademark License Agreement

If a suspected brand violation is found, how should it be reported?

It is in the best interests of all licensees of the Bluetooth® trademarks to work to protect them. To facilitate in this effort, the Bluetooth SIG established a brand enforcement program - where misuse of the Bluetooth® brand can be researched and followed up on.

What is the Qualification Enforcement Program?

The Qualification Enforcement Program protects all Bluetooth SIG members by ensuring Bluetooth® products are properly qualified. The program monitors the market and performs monthly audits to ensure that Bluetooth® products are being sold by member companies that have successfully completed the Bluetooth Qualification Process.

It is important to note that customs officials use the Bluetooth SIG’s Bluetooth Products Database to verify if a product using Bluetooth® technology has completed the Bluetooth Qualification Process. If customs officials are unable to locate a product in the database, customs may seize the product.

The Bluetooth Products Database is also used by distributors and online retailers. If online retailers or Bluetooth SIG is unable to locate a product in the qualification database that product may be removed from the online retailer.

Bluetooth SIG members are a major source of information for this program by reporting violations. If you suspect a product is in violation, you may report that
here.

How does a member use a Bluetooth Qualification Consultant?

If a member company wishes to engage a Bluetooth Qualification Consultant to provide qualification-related services, the member company will need to engage the consultant directly. Bluetooth Qualification Consultants are not employed by or representatives of Bluetooth SIG. Each member that engages a Bluetooth Qualification Consultant is responsible for establishing the terms of its relationship with the Bluetooth Qualification Consultant, including with respect to payment and scope of services.

  • Qualification Consultants
    Bluetooth Qualification Consultants are independent consultants who have met certain requirements and are permitted to call themselves “Bluetooth Qualification Consultants” when they assist members with submission of their products for qualification. Members may, but are not required to, engage Bluetooth Qualification Consultants to provide qualification-related services.

I keep hearing about qualifying, declaring, or listing my products. What does that mean?

One of the core responsibilities of the Bluetooth SIG is to help member companies ensure their Bluetooth® products properly comply with collectively, the Bluetooth License Agreements. This promotes global product interoperability and reinforces the strength of the Bluetooth® brand to the benefit of all SIG members. The Bluetooth SIG manages this responsibility through the Bluetooth Qualification Process. You must complete this process for any product to which you would like the Bluetooth License Agreements applied. To learn more about how, visit the Qualify Your Product page on the Bluetooth® website.

 

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