Bluetooth Profiles: Your Ultimate Guide & Complet List (2019 Update)

Bluetooth Profiles: Your Ultimate Guide & Complet List

When do you know someone created really excellent technology? When it’s a standard mention on Amazon product descriptions and product packaging. And we all know Bluetooth capability is one of the first things we check when shopping for tech gadgets.

But do you really understand this technology? Here’s another characteristic of exceptional tech: It develops and changes over time. For Bluetooth this led to the many profiles and their settings you’ll find mentioned in user manuals these days. Do you understand what you’re reading?

Here’s your challenge: Finding the correct Bluetooth profiles so your gadgets will work exactly the way you want them to. Different products incorporate different profiles and one of the most important areas they’re used in is Bluetooth headsets. If you get the correct profiles you’ll be safer on the road and get more done during the day.

So, let’s help you determine exactly what you need.

What is a Bluetooth Profile?

Bluetooth is no longer a one dimensional, one-size-fits-all feature. It’s used in many modern gadgets, but to provide users with optimal efficiency profiles are created to suit certain applications of this technology.

A Bluetooth profile can also be described as a service. All Bluetooth enabled devices will have the basic Bluetooth standard. On top of this there are services relevant to the type of device.

Here’s an example: A Wii controller and a cell phone headset have different application. Therefore, they require unique Bluetooth services (profiles) added to their basic Bluetooth connectivity. That’s the only way they’re able to perform certain functions.

Each profile relates to a certain aspect of wireless communication as you’ll see in our descriptions below. To enjoy the benefits of one of these aspects, the gadget you use must be compatible with that specific service (profile).

When you purchase your next headset it will use Bluetooth according to the profile capabilities embedded in the device. The headset manufacturer decided which profiles to add to each model. The more advanced a set the more profiles it will have. You need to pick yours according to the services you’ll want to use.

Firstly, you need to understand which profiles you’ll want to use. Secondly, when you need two Bluetooth devices (e.g. your car and your headset) to be completely compatible, their profiles must match.

Now, let’s discuss a fewprofiles to help you discern what you need.

Important Profiles on Bluetooth Headsets

Your first step in purchasing the perfect Bluetooth headset is determining which services you need. What is the context in which you use your Bluetooth device? Your needs will relate to some of these profiles:

  • Headset Profile (HSP): This is one of the most popular profiles and most used. It forms the foundation of how you can make wireless phonecalls in the car. SCO (Synchronous Connection Overlink) technology is used so your mobile phone can connect with your headset. The Bluetooth earphones can then take over the most basic of calling actions such as answering and volume adjustment.
  • Hands-Free Profile (HFP): This profile enables your headset to communicate with your phone. This is usually used in conjunction with HSP. The Bluetooth enabled headset takes over functions such as answering calls, so you don’t have to touch your phone while driving, walking or working.
  • Advanced Audio Distribution Profile (A2DP): This is also called Bluetooth Audio Streaming. This service supports the streaming of multimedia audio between devices and can be used to channel music from your phone to your headset. It’s advanced enough to facilitate stereo signals too.
  • Audio/Video Remote Control Profile (AVRCP): Originally this profile was designed so you can control many different devices with one remote (your TV, Hi-Fi and ore). It means a Bluetooth device can be remotely controlled. A practical application is to rewind or forward a track without touching the audio sending unit (e.g. your phone or MP3 player). It’s also utilized with navigation systems in vehicles. In practice a headset’s volume and power buttons will be utilized to control media playing.
  • Dial-up Networking Profile (DUN): This profile is needed for the Bluetooth device to access the internet.
  • Synchronization Profile (SYNCH): If you need your personal information synchronized between two Bluetooth devices you need this profile.
  • Object Exchange (OBEX) Protocol: Through this service you can send a range of information such as business cards, data or applications between two devices. It’s based on technology that enables binary objects to travel between two Bluetooth enabled objects.
  • SIM Access Profile (SAP): This profile makes communication in your vehicle much easier. Instead of needing a second SIM card, this profile enables a Bluetooth advice to connect with the SIM in your phone.
  • File Transfer Protocol (FTP): If what you use your Bluetooth device for requires files to be shared between units, you need this profile activated on both.
  • Message Access Profile (MAP): This helps you stay in contact while you keep on driving safely. The profile can facilitate reading of incoming text messages. Advanced features allow you to send back a basic, pre-set message too, by simply tapping a button.

You can see that some profiles are more business oriented and others relate to entertainment such as enjoying your music in the car. Can you identify what you need the most based on where you use Bluetooth in your lifestyle? Or do you realize there are more ways Bluetooth can benefit you thanks to these modern profiles?

Now simply list the most important ones and find a Bluetooth headset that matches your preferences.

But there’s one more important thing many consumers forget about: Mono vs Stereo.

What Profiles are Important for Mono Bluetooth Sets?

On a Mono Bluetooth set you’ll basically be using:

  • HSP in order to let your phone communicate with your wireless headphones
  • HFP so you don’t have to use your hands to manage phone functionality
  • AVRCP can be used to help skip tracks, pause them and more, so you don’t have to look away from the road or use your hands

If you only require mono audio you don’t need any more profiles. This may be a more affordable option but know that the audio won’t be exceptional.

What Profiles are Important for Stereo Bluetooth Sets?

Are you very specific about your audio experience in the car? Then you’ll probably need stereo wireless headphones. In these sets your audio signal is transported via A2DP which facilitates stereo experiences. To move beyond a mono audio experience, both devices (your phone and your headset) must have this profile activated.

5 Reasons Why You Should Care About Bluetooth Profiles

So, why do you need to know all of this? Here’s why insight into Bluetooth profiles is vital for the modern consumer:

  1. Do more with Bluetooth:Your current Bluetooth setup may be very basic; your gadgets may be able to do much more than you think. To determine what features you can utilize you need to understand the terms used in your user manual. You can enjoy time in the car much more than you do at the moment.With devices that have the right profiles it will be like sitting at home browsing through your tracks and you don’t have to lift a finger.
  2. No more disappointment: Without an understanding of this technology you may expect more of a device than it can actually do. When that happens you purchase Bluetooth earphones only to realize afterwards that they won’t work for the intended use.
  3. Don’t waste money anymore: You won’t buy gadgets you can’t use. If you know more about these profiles you can make informed decisions.
  4. Safety: Many Bluetooth profiles can make your lifestyle safer because it allows you to focus on the road, never look down and act within the guidelines of the law. If you don’t know how these profiles empower you, you can’t create these safe habits.
  5. Stay connected:Did you even know you can access the internet with your Bluetooth device? But then you need the right profiles. This is a handy feature for people who love using Spotify or Pandora.

When you realize the value of this knowledge, you’ll never miss the small details on product packaging again. You’ll know exactly what you need and here’s the bonus: Never again will you purchase a device that seems impressive only to realize it’s not compatible with your phone.

A little knowledge will save a you a lot of money.


It’s best you get up to date now. This technology will keep on evolving. Make sure it enhances your lifestyle, not confuse you.

What other terms do you find perplexing? Leave your comments below and let’s help each other make the most of this marvellous technology.

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