Move over Wi-Fi, Li-Fi is here
Potential uses of LEDs are not limited to illumination: smart lighting products are emerging that can offer various additional features, including linking your laptop or smartphone to the internet. Move over Wi-Fi, Li-Fi is here.
Almost everyone uses Wi-Fi every day and Bluetooth every so often. But these wireless technologies have a fatal flaw: they use radio waves to communicate. The problem with radio waves is that, although they offer decent speeds, they transmit data slowly, and the signal is often blocked or affected by equipment as simple as the microwave in your kitchen. However, a team of scientists are hard at work developing a new, extremely fast method of wireless communication, and it doesn’t use radio waves; it uses light from LED bulbs.
Light-based wireless communication, coined as Li-Fi by Harald Haas at a TED talk in 2011, is a method of internet connectivity that doesn’t use cables or radio waves, instead flickering the light from a special LED to transmit data just like your Wi-Fi adapter would. The technology is still being developed by researchers at the University of Edinburgh in the UK, but it already looks like it will be more effective and more secure than traditional radio-based communication.
Wi-Fi works by spewing out radio waves in all directions around your home or business from a wireless router. When your wireless device, such as a smartphone, detects the wireless radio waves, it connects to your wireless router, which then connects you to the Internet. The idea behind Li-Fi is almost identical, but instead of wireless radio waves being sent in all directions, it instead sends light shooting out to connect to your smartphone, laptop, or other devices. You wouldn’t even notice, but your LED lights would flicker at high speed, sending data all around your house.
Trackback from your site.