On power and throughput tradeoffs of WiFi and bluetooth in smartphones

Roy Friedman, Alex Kogan, Yevgeny Krivolapov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

122 Scopus citations


This paper describes a combined power and throughput performance study of WiFi and Bluetooth usage in smartphones. The work measures the obtained throughput in various settings while employing each of these technologies, and the power consumption level associated with them. In addition, the power requirements of Bluetooth and WiFi in their respective noncommunicating modes are also compared. The study reveals several interesting phenomena and tradeoffs. In particular, the paper identifies many situations in which WiFi is superior to Bluetooth, countering previous reports. The study also identifies a couple of scenarios that are better handled by Bluetooth. The conclusions from this study suggest preferred usage patterns, as well as operative suggestions for researchers and smartphone developers. This includes a cross-layer optimization for TCP/IP that could greatly improve the throughput to power ratio whenever the transmitter is more capable than the receiver.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6200281
Pages (from-to)1363-1376
Number of pages14
JournalIEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing
Issue number7
StatePublished - 29 May 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Bluetooth
  • WiFi
  • power consumption
  • smartphones
  • throughput

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Software
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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