Li-Fi technology is a ground-breaking light-based communication technology, which makes use of light waves instead of radio technology to deliver data.
* Li-fi uses Visible Light Spectrum for data transmission.
* Wi-Fi uses the traditional RF spectrum.
* RF spectrum is overcrowded, with Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Cellular data etc. all sharing the same band.
Visible Light Spectrum is 10,000 times the Rf spectrum. Thus a lot of free band space for new technologies
Applications of Li-Fi
Li-Fi applications are varied as a result of its key features, such as directional lighting, energy efficiency, intrinsic security, high data rate capability, signal blocking by walls and integrated networking capability.
Each light fixture in the application environment becomes a separate data channel. These channels can supply different data into each separate pool of light, delivered at the full rated download speed for that channel.
In a meeting room environment, the access area of each channel is the width of the light pool, and can be accessed by multiple users. Each user can receive higher data rates than would be the case for an equivalent Wi-Fi channel. In the Wi-Fi case, each user or group of users directly competes for access to bandwidth. The net result is that the more connections there are, the slower the download speeds are for all. By contrast, in the case of Li-Fi, with its greater number of available access points, each pool of light provides full channel data rates with fewer simultaneous users. The overall net benefit to each user is up to 1000 times greater speeds. In addition, and in contrast to radio waves, the light does not pass through the walls. Therefore, with minimal precautions to avoid leakage from windows, etc., security is fundamentally enhanced as compared with Wi-Fi.
In external urban environments, the use of Li-Fi enabled street lamps would provide a network of internet access points. In cellular communication, the distance between radio base stations has come down to about 200-500 metres. So, instead of deploying new radio base stations in our cities, street lamps could provide both, illumination during night, and high speed data communication 24/7. Surprisingly, even when the lights are off as perceived by the eye, full data communication rates are still possible. There is also an additional cost benefit as installing new radio base stations usually comes with large cost – for installation and site lease.
Our homes already have lighting widely installed. The use of Li-Fi enabled lighting will transform the applications that can be envisaged, not only the interconnection of devices, such as televisions, computers and Hi-Fi, but also connecting ordinary domestic appliances, such as fridges, washing machines, microwaves and vacuums. The “internet of everything”.
Hospitals are a specific case of an environment where both EMI sensitivity and security of data are issues. Li-Fi can enable the better deployment of secure networked medical instruments, patient records, etc.
WHICH COMPANIES ARE WORKING ON "LI-FI"?
The Major one is Pure Li-Fi, directly from the inventors of Li-Fi. It is the only company with a realized product. Apple Inc. is working with them to realize Li-Fi in iPhones and other Apple products.
Apart from that a lot of companies are working on developing devices which can implement Li-Fi and similar technologies— biggies like Samsung Philips etc.
Samsung basically is developing a product (LumiLink) which would enhance the Iow quality for a lot of its products.
While Disney Research is also working on VLC but I do not see a product coming soon from them.
Thanks for reading.