GSMArena researched the Bluetooth 3.0 issue and the reason for the low speeds. And they find that it’s a simple case of confusing labels. You were getting became instantly clear when you know everything about bluetooth 3.0.
The Bluetooth 3.0 specifications consists with three things – Unicast connection-less data, Enhanced Power Control and Alternate MAC/PHY.
The Unicast part specifies a way to send a little data without much delay (e.g. a remote control). The Enhanced Power Control keeps a tighter reign on the transmitting power and makes the device a little more power-efficient.
This two features are the good sides of Bluetooth 3.0. Now comes the Alternate MAC/PHY section of the specifications which is much more complicated than others. It’s also the section that’s not mandatory to get a Bluetooth 3.0 certification. It allows two Bluetooth 3.0 certified devices to connect over a Bluetooth link and then switch to a 802.11 link, the base technology for Wi-Fi to achieve speeds of up to 24Mbps.
Devices that support Alternate MAC/PHY are certified as “Bluetooth 3.0+HS” (High Speed) and ones that don’t are certified as just “Bluetooth 3.0” and are limited to regular Bluetooth transfer speeds because of lacking Wi-Fi magic link.
Another important research reveals that Android 2.2 doesn’t even support Bluetooth 3.0 – the BlueZ library that it uses is old and works only up to Bluetooth 2.1+EDR. You can check Bluetooth support info for the other Android versions over at their dev site (there’s no info on Gingerbread though).
It’s possible that manufacturers (like Samsung) use a different software stack, but the transfer between the two Bluetooth 3.0 certified Samsung droids we tested was going at v2.1 speeds, so that wasn’t it.
Most importantly none of the present phones they checked were Bluetooth 3.0+HS certified. This put an end to this speed test – 24Mbps just wasn’t going to happen so when you come to pick your next futuristic smartphone. You can safely ignore the Bluetooth 3.0 specs as long as they don’t list HS explicitly. The Bluetooth SIG website settled any remaining doubts you had.