gadg-et-oid [gaj-it-oid]


1. having the characteristics or form of a gadget;
resembling a mechanical contrivance or device.

Pico “Really Tiny” Bluetooth Dongle From MobileFun

At the beginning of 2009 I acquired a Sandberg USB Bluetooth dongle, and some time later a Sandberg USB Wifi Adaptor. Both of these products are impressively, absurdly small but neither of them come even close to this particular little bluetooth gem which redefines the category of svelte, sleek USB bluetooth adaptors and delivers a product that actually can remain in your laptop USB port indefinitely. In fact, you may be hard pressed to get a grip on its 3.5mm protrusion and remove it.

Compared to the Sandberg USB Bluetooth dongle, an obese 12mm, this is tiny. It’s diminutive size has afforded it the “pico” monitor as opposed to the “nano” adopted by the now comparatively quite large competition. Suffice to say, if you’re shopping for a USB Bluetooth dongle then “pico” is the “in” category until these gubbins become smaller, or simply obsolete.

The measurements above were obtained from my Samsung NC10 which has two conveniently placed USB ports in which I could compare the “pico” and “nano” offerings side by side. The Sandberg “nano” adaptor is quite visually misleading because, despite being mostly USB connector, quite a lot of its USB connector protrudes before you even get to the “guts” of the device. About 2.5mm to be precise.

I had to break out my Griffin Clarifi to take the below photo, although more blur wouldn’t really have made this any less cut and dry. (Pico dongle on the left!)

The Pico Bluetooth Dongle seems to work in OSX out-of-the-box with no need for drivers. I plugged it into my Apple keyboard where it’s completely hidden from sight and it detected and set up a new interface with no problems whatsoever. I could also then “see” my own laptop in a search for bluetooth device as, of course, it had built-in bluetooth too. The same, naturally, goes for Windows XP which detected and setup the device trouble free. It’s somewhat less concealed on my Samsung NC10, however I would be perfectly comfortable transporting it around, carrying it in a case and outright leaving it in there permanently- at least if it didn’t already have bluetooth built in.

Overall, this is a star buy bluetooth dongle. If, for some bizarre reason, your laptop is ancient enough to lack bluetooth, and you’re desperate to get those pictures off your mobile phone the wireless way, then there can be no better choice than to drop a paltry £8.95 on this Atomic Pico Bluetooth Dongle.

Thursday, September 17th, 2009, Personal Computing.