In what's turning out to be a big week for Bluetooth announcements, Intel will reveal today that it plans to work with Microsoft to make its Bluetooth software "native to the Windows operating environment by the first half of 2001," according to an Intel representative.

In the interim, Intel will license its current Bluetooth software stack to other vendors. The Bluetooth software stack is already compatible with Windows 98 and 2000, and offers the rudimentary Bluetooth features of file synchronisation, data transfer, dial-up networking, and the capability to identify other Bluetooth-enabled devices.

Intel also announced a new corporate division, The Wireless Products Operation, which will build Bluetooth PC adapters as well as data and voice access points due to be made available to manufacturing partners.

Todays news coincides with the beginning of the Bluetooth Congress 2000, in Monte Carlo. Billed as "The World's Largest Bluetooth Event," Bluetooth Congress 2000 has been expanded to reflect the maturation of Bluetooth product development and the expected proliferation of Bluetooth devices, according to event organizers.

Motorola has already announced a Bluetooth car kit, which company officials said would enable car manufacturers to deploy Bluetooth features in their products by 2002.