Most beadmakers work soft glass. Moretti is an example.
Assuming you are looking at a finished piece, and not at raw material you can do compatibility test with in the flame, the simplest way to distinguish between hard and soft glass is by density. Soft glass weighs 1/3 more, or hard glass weighs 1/4 less, depending on which one is considered normal. Simplest way in the flame is to take a small piece of a known glass, and an equal piece of the unknown glass, and make a blob with them overlapping. Pull this out into a thread, and watch how much it curves as it cools.
Cobalt blue has been around in limited quantities for quite some time, but generally speaking, early to mid 90's was when borosilicate colours became available. I was mixing my own colours when I started back in '93.