See If Your Computer Already Has Bluetooth
Before we proceed, wed encourage you to give your computer a double check for Bluetooth radios. If you have an older laptop or computer, youre probably correct in assuming that you dont have Bluetooth built-in. If you have a newer laptop, however, its practically a given that you have Bluetooth. Similarly, it used to be a non-existent feature on desktop PCs, but in the last few years a surprising number of desktops have begun shipping with Bluetooth radios.
Its simple to check for evidence of Bluetooth in Windows. You can check for Bluetooth by heading to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Network Connections. If there is a properly installed and configured Bluetooth radio, youll see an entry for Bluetooth Network Connection alongside other network connections like Ethernet and Wi-Fi.
Alternatively, you can open up Device Managerjust hit Start and search for device managerand then look for a Bluetooth entry. Device Manager will show you if your PC has a Bluetooth device, even if its not correctly set up.
We also suggest double checking the stats on your PC just to be sure. Although unlikely, its possible that the hardware vendor behind your hardware uses a specialty driver or some other tool that you need to download in order to enable the Bluetooth connection. A little poking around with Google with reveal if you have the hardware in the first place and if you need any special driver, BIOS, or other updates.
Way 1 Check The Notification Area
This is the quickest and easiest way to check if your laptop has Bluetooth or not. If Bluetooth is up and running on your laptop, youll be able to see a Bluetooth icon on the taskbar in the lower right corner of the screen. You can also click the up arrow to open the system tray to see whether the Bluetooth icon is there.
If you don’t see Bluetooth there, you can use the following ways to check if your laptop has Bluetooth or not.
Install The Bluetooth Adapter To Your Computer
In most cases, you can just plug the adapter into your computer to let Windows install the necessary device driver automatically. But if that doesn’t work, try a driver updater tool or visit the manufacturer’s website for specific installation directions.
Each of the four Bluetooth adapters we tried installed on their own.
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How To Add Bluetooth To A Pc
The mostconvenient solution to not having Bluetooth is to buy either a dongle or aninternal card.
Bluetooth dongles are cheap, with prices coming in around $12 as of this writing on Amazon Prime. They work by plugging them directly in one of the available USB ports on your computer.
Once the dongleis recognized by your computer, turn on the Bluetooth device you want toconnect. Your computer will recognize the device and allow you to establish aconnection. Once paired, you should now be able to use the connected device.
USB dongles aremore convenient to use. They can be taken out when not in use or be used onanother computer quickly.
Internal Bluetooth Card
InternalBluetooth cards are more powerful than USB dongles but installing them comes ata price. They need to be installed in one of your motherboards PCI slots. Thiscan be an issue for users who need that slot for other devices. However, youshould also note that an internal solution would mean freeing up a USB port forother devices too.
Bluetooth cardsare not ideal for laptops. They are more for desktops that require a strongsignal for high-volume transfers.
Find A Bluetooth Adapter
Getting a Bluetooth adapter for your PC is the easiest way to add this functionality to a desktop or laptop. You don’t need to worry about opening your computer case, installing a Bluetooth card, or anything like that.
Generally speaking, you want to get the fastest Bluetooth transmitter your PC will support. For most modern PCs, that means a USB 3.0 adapter. However, if you look at your PC’s USB ports and they’ve got black plastic inserts, they’re probably USB 2.0. If they’re blue or labeled SS , they’re USB 3.0. This matters because while USB 3.0 devices work in USB 2.0 ports, they won’t work as fast as when plugged into USB 3.0 ports.
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Using Your Bluetooth Device To Send And Receive Files
Now that your device is connected to your PC you can start using the wireless connection youve now set up. Mostly, this should be automatic. If youve connected a pair of Bluetooth headphones, for example, Windows should recognize them immediately as a playback device.
If youve connected a phone or a device that has the ability to send and receive files, you can launch the Bluetooth File Transfer function from the Bluetooth settings page. Scroll down and click the Send or receive files via Bluetooth link.
In the Bluetooth File Transfer window, select whether you want to send or receive files and then follow the prompts.
Check The Device Manager
The easiest way to check for Bluetooth support is via Device Manager. To check if your PC has Bluetooth, do the following:
- Press the Windows key + X or right-click Start, to open the Win + X menu.
- Select Device Manager on that menu to open the window.
- On the window, look for the Bluetooth Radios category. That should be listed somewhere nearer the top of the window.
- If you cant find Bluetooth Radios, click Network adapters on the Device Manager window. Bluetooth Radios might be listed there instead.
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How To Tell If A Linux Computer Has Bluetooth
If youre using a Linux laptop or PC and want to know if it has Bluetooth capability, you can find out with a simple command. This will work on both desktop and laptop.
If you are using Linux, be aware that some Linux kernels are not compatible with all Bluetooth modules so will not recognize them. While the query above works on most newer hardware and mainstream distros, if you compiled your own or are using something exotic, it may not return the correct result. I tested it on Ubuntu and Zorin and it worked fine. Your mileage may vary though.
See If There Is A Bluetooth Icon In The Notification Area
This is the quickest and easiest way to check if your laptop has Bluetooth or not. All you need to do is to check if there is a Bluetooth icon in the notification area. If there is, your laptop is definitely has Bluetooth.
If the Bluetooth icon doesnt appear in the notification area, you need to open Device Manager to check if your laptop has Bluetooth or not. Just read on to open Device Manager.
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Solution 2 Check The Control Panel
Another method you can use t check if your device has Bluetooth is to look for Bluetooth in Control Panel. This is fairly simple, and you can do it by following these steps:
You should find a Bluetooth Network Connection there. If you cant find it listed there, then your laptop or desktop doesnt have Bluetooth.
How Do I Check If My Pc Has Bluetooth
Open up your Device Manager. It’s simple in Windows 10: press the Windows key and X together, then M.
You can also find it by searching for it in the search bar or by going into Control Panel, Hardware & Sound, then clicking Device Manager.
Once you open it up, youll be greeted by a window that looks like this:
This particular PC doesnt have Bluetooth, and that’s why there is no entry in the list called Bluetooth Radios. The sections are listed alphabetically, so it would be right at the top if the machine did have it.
However, do check under the Network adapters section a little further down as Bluetooth can also be listed there too. Again, if you don’t see anything, then your PC does not have it.
If anything in this section says Bluetooth then youre in luck, and your machine has Bluetooth functionality here.
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To See Which Bluetooth Version Is On Your Pc
In the search box on the taskbar, type device manager, then select it from the results.
Select the arrow next to Bluetooth to expand it.
Select the Bluetooth radio listing .
Select the Advanced tab, then look for the LMP listing in the Firmware or Firmware version area. That number tells you what LMP version you have on your device.
Find your version number on the table below to map your LMP version to its Bluetooth Core Specification number. That’s the highest core specification your device fully supports. Accessories with higher specifications may still work, but with reduced functionality.
Link Manager Protocol Version
Bluetooth Core Specification
Check The Settings App
Another way to check Bluetooth settings is to open the Settings app in Windows 10.
You can do it by following these steps:
- Click Start menu button and select Settings or press Windows key + I.
- Click Devices to open the window.
If you have Bluetooth, you should be able to toggle Bluetooth button and also be able to add Bluetooth devices.
This is how it looks in Windows 11-
Users who dont have Bluetooth can still add it to their desktop or laptop with a Bluetooth USB dongle/adapter. You just plug that into a USB slot on your desktop or laptop.
PS: If you upgraded a Windows 7 laptop or desktop to Windows 11/10, it might not support Bluetooth, and the methods listed above is also how you can check if thats the case.
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How To Turn On And Use Bluetooth In Windows 10
Brady Gavin has been immersed in technology for 15 years and has written over 150 detailed tutorials and explainers. He’s covered everything from Windows 10 registry hacks to Chrome browser tips. Brady has a diploma in Computer Science from Camosun College in Victoria, BC. Read more…
These days, most mobile devices come with Bluetooth. If youve got a reasonable modern Windows 10 laptop, its got Bluetooth. If you have a desktop PC, it might or might not have Bluetooth built-in, but you can always add it if you want. Assuming you have access to Bluetooth on your system, heres how to turn it on and get it set up so you can use your speakers, mice, keyboards, headsets, trackers, or whatever other devices you might have.
Check Bluetooth In Control Panel
Besides the above method, you can also access the Control Panel to check if your computer has Bluetooth.
How to tell if PC has Bluetooth in this way? You can follow this guide:
You can see a Bluetooth Network Connection there. However, if you dont see that option, your computer should not have built-in Bluetooth.
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How To Add Bluetooth Capability To A Computer
If the above checks told you that your computer does not have Bluetooth capability but you still want to use it, you will need to add some hardware. Bluetooth adapters come as mPCIe network cards with aerials or USB dongles. Which you use depends on the computer and your situation.
Usually, Bluetooth mPCIe adapter cards have a stronger signal and greater range thanks to their ability to pull more voltage to larger aerials. They will work best in a PC. If you use a laptop or small form factor PC, you may not have the space or want the aerials sticking out, so a USB dongle would work better.
Costs range from $15 up to $45 and adapters come in all shapes and sizes. Some are dedicated Bluetooth while others are combination Wi-Fi and Bluetooth.
Adding Bluetooth capability to a computer is refreshingly simple. With the sheer number and quality of peripherals around right now, it is a great time to go wireless and Bluetooth is how you do it!
How Do I Install Bluetooth On My Computer
When you don’t find Bluetooth, it is also possible that Bluetooth hardware is present, but simply broken, or that Windows cant recognize it because the Bluetooth driver is out of date, etc. In this case, you should update Bluetooth driver.
If you are sure there is no Bluetooth in your PC and you need one, you can install Bluetooth on your PC through the following guide.
Step 1: Check that you have a free USB port. If not, you should consider getting a quality USB hub or a USB expansion card.
Step 2: Purchase a USB Bluetooth adapter. When you buy the USB Bluetooth adapter, a Bluetooth driver may be enclosed. Or the sellers will offer you a website so that you can download the corresponding driver.
Step 3: If you are using Windows XP or Windows 7, you should install the Bluetooth driver. But if you are using Windows 8/10, you may be allowed to use the USB Bluetooth adapter without installing the driver.
Step 4:Enable Bluetooth and pair the devices. After connecting the two devices, you can then exchange the data.
Does my laptop have Bluetooth? How to install Bluetooth on computer? After reading this post, you can get answers.
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Does Your Computer Have Bluetooth Built In
Here’s how to check if your desktop or laptop running Windows, macOS, Linux, or Chrome OS has Bluetooth support.
Whether you have a desktop or laptop, you might wonder if your computer has Bluetooth support. Perhaps you want to take advantage of Bluetooth connections, but don’t want to buy an adapter if your computer already has it built in.
We’ll show you how to find out if your Windows PC, Mac, or Chromebook has Bluetooth built in, and what you can do if it doesn’t.
How Do I Know If My Laptop Has Bluetooth
Lets take Windows 10 as an example to show how to check if your laptop has Bluetooth.
1. Click on Search and enter device manager.2. Click Device Manager on the right in the search results.3. Expand Bluetooth Radios category, and you will see the Bluetooth hardware here.4. If you dont see the Bluetooth Radios category, please find your Bluetooth in the Network adapters category.
If you find that there is no Bluetooth Radios category in Device Manager and there is no Bluetooth device in the Network adapters category, that means your laptop does not have a Bluetooth device. You can easily add it by purchasing a USB Bluetooth adapter.
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How To Install Enable And Troubleshoot Bluetooth In Windows
Some computers, like laptops, come with Bluetooth preinstalled, while others, like desktop computers, require a Bluetooth adapter. In either case, having hardware that accepts a Bluetooth signals is required to turn on and use Bluetooth devices, like a keyboard, mouse, speakers, headphones, and earphones.
Below are steps to check if Bluetooth is installed, how it’s turned on, and how to troubleshoot Bluetooth that won’t turn on.
The Pros And Cons Of Bluetooth
Bluetooth provides a way to be relieved from tangled wires and it lets users conveniently use their computer from a further distance. For instance, you can use Bluetooth headphones to listen to music while being a certain distance away from your computer.
Bluetooth is always being improved and the latest version is Bluetooth 5.0. Currently, it aims to use less battery power, increase the distance between the device and the accessory, and improve the speeds of data transfer between devices.
To notice these improvements though it requires that both devices using Bluetooth have the latest version of it. Bluetooth compatibility issues may still prevent devices from using the full capabilities of the latest Bluetooth technology.
There are downsides to Bluetooth such as slower data transmission rates compared to using Wi-Fi or wires such as USB. Bluetooth 5.0 is the newest version of Bluetooth and has transfer speeds up to 2 MB/s which is double the speed of the previous version. On the other side of the spectrum are USB Type-c cables which can do about 10,000 MB/s . USB type-C is double what USB 3.0 cables offer 5 GB/s.
Next is battery life. This applies to laptops and handheld devices. Bluetooth will have an effect on the battery life of your device but I would not worry too much about this compared to other optimizations you can make for your battery life.
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