I was watching Expedition Unknown the other day when Josh Gates said that Bluetooth was named after a Viking king named Harald Bluetooth. This is something I never heard before and it sounded very fascinating so I wanted to look into it more.
Why Name Bluetooth After Vikings?
The story I heard starts back in 1996. A number of companies like IBM, Intel, and Nokia, started looking for a short-range radio standard. So Intel put Jim Kardach in charge of bringing it together. Around the same time he was reading a book about Vikings when he learned about King Harald Bluetooth who united Scandinavia. So he put Bluetooth as the code name in an early PowerPoint about the project as a way of saying they were going to unite PC and cellular short-range wireless.
Long story short the official names of PAN and RadioWire fall through and the product launched with the codename Bluetooth.
The Meaning Of The Bluetooth Logo
Another neat fact is that the logo is the combination of the Viking runes for “H” and “B”. The initials of the Viking king.
I never knew the name of any Viking kings before or anything about their runes other then they looked cool. But all this time we have been carrying Viking runes and the name of a Viking king on our phone and in our pocket. I was watching treasure hunters on Expedition Unknown and I ended up finding my own little treasure in the process!
For more info check out this tech history post written by Jim Kardach himself.