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Don't Buy a New Smartphone Unless It's Really (Bluetooth) Smart

It's also up to developers to make an Android-compatible app. Hone, which sells a Bluetooth Smart key fob that wirelessly links to an iPhone via Bluetooth Smart, plans to roll out an Android version soon.

"We are planning to add Android support, and in fact my partner went to Google I/O this summer to go to their talks," Geoff Litwack, Hone's founder, said in an email response.

"We are somewhat concerned," he said, "about customer confusion around which Android phones would be compatible with Hone, as you say. But the potential upsides going forward, as virtually all Android phones shipping in the U.S. run 4.3, make it worth it. Sure to be a huge market."

Already ABI Research, a market researcher, projects that half of all Bluetooth devices shipped this year will be Smart or Smart ready. That's going from zero in 2010 to 1 billion shipments this year.

If you need a new phone now, we've done the work for you. Here is a list of smartphones that are Bluetooth Smart ready or have Bluetooth 4.0 and are waiting for the Android update. With the necessary hardware in your phone, the rest is just time and a software update.

Smartphones that are Bluetooth Smart ready
  • Apple iPhone 4s, 5, 5c and 5s
  • Motorola Droid RAZR
  • Samsung Galaxy series
  • Sony Xperia
  • BlackBerry Q10
  • BlackBerry Z10

Phones with Bluetooth 4.0 that need the Android update
  • Samsung Galaxy S III
  • Samsung Galaxy S4
  • LG ENACT (VS890)
  • LG Optimus G
  • LG G2
  • HTC One

This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.
Tamara Chuang is an outside contributor to TheStreet. Her opinions are her own.
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