In today’s modern time and turbo-charged digital world, the Internet plays a considerable role in how we communicate, work, do our daily activities, and so on. It has become a significant part of our everyday lives. Just like most things, connectivity is also evolving. The skyrocketing number of users demands more accommodation and it is only logical to future-proof the networks.
We currently have WiFi technology that utilizes radio frequencies to transmit data; although it works, it may not be enough.
LiFi technology can revolutionize our internet connectivity in a broader spectrum. LiFi or Light Fidelity is under the broad category of Visible Light Communication (VLC), but LiFi is unique because it uses light energy for communication and has the ability to send data from a light source to a device and back. This is what sets LiFi apart from other subsets of VLC.
The light becomes data in this technology. It has the ability to transmit data at incredibly high speeds more than a thousand times than WiFi technology.
A Little Background
We can trace back the origins of VLC, and by extension of LiFi, to the 1880 ‘Photophone’ invention of Graham Bell. The photophone was a wireless device that utilizes a beam of light to transmit speech.
LiFi was developed about a decade ago by German Physicist Harald Haas of Edinburgh University. It was first unveiled in 2011.
The boom and high demand for higher bandwidth systems will drive the development of LiFi technology in the next decade or so.
How Does It Work Exactly?
LiFi networks are bi-directional. It means that the network has uplinks and downlinks that can be formed between the transmitter and receiver simultaneously.
It is not a different way to get internet but rather a new way to deploy internet.
LiFi is composed of two components including the LED light source such as fixtures used for illumination like lamps, bulb lights, and more. The light fixtures act as an access point for data. The light bulbs are essentially your router.
The impulses of light emitted by the source are captured and decoded by a receiver. However, you won’t be able to see the flickering. The light pulses happen more than a million times per second.
This modulation is performed in such a way that is too quick for the eyes to notice. It can work indoors and even outdoors.
Advantages of LiFi
LiFi technology is like the younger, less famous relative of WiFi, but is way smarter. Here are the benefits of LiFi and why you need it.
High data speed
It boasts a speed 100 times faster than WiFi technology. One of the biggest advantages of LiFi technology is its capacity to drive bigger bandwidths and higher data rates. Under laboratory conditions, developers found LiFi to demonstrate speeds of up to 1Gbps.
Light travels faster than radiowaves and if you need to download a high-definition movie, you only need to wait for a matter of seconds.
Since data communication is in line of sight (LOS), it is highly secured. In addition to that, the LiFi signal only covers the low region and does not pass through the walls which means that unauthorized people cannot access it. It cannot be breached by other users who are not in the same room.
Low Power Operation
Another leverage of the latest technology is its affordability and energy efficiency. LiFi-connected devices consume only low power for operation.
Wherever there is a light source, you can connect to the Internet. Light bulbs are everywhere – in homes, offices, restaurants, shops, malls, planes, trains, and cars. The list goes on. This only means that wherever the day takes you, LiFi is always available.
Radio Frequency Spectrum Saving
The next-generation LiFi uses an optical spectrum and avoids the already crowded RF spectrum. Wireless traffic is drastically increasing each year and since our current Internet technology uses radiofrequency for data transmission, oversaturation is a real problem. This means that more interferences will occur and the speed would suffer.
LiFi has the ability to keep your connection speed even if there is a high-density transmission.
Among the most significant benefits of LiFi technology is that it does not use radiofrequency radiation, ergo, it is harmless to humans, unlike WiFi. LiFi is a far safer option and completely eliminates radiation-related health concerns. It offers a great promise as it does not pollute. It can be regarded as a green technology for device-to-device communication.
Since it does not depend on radio frequencies, LiFi can keep you connected when WiFi and cellular connections can’t. LiFi is simpler and less complex than Wi-Fi which requires radio circuits, antennas, and complex receivers.
LiFi has a wide range of applications including Public Internet access using LED lighting and vehicle-to-vehicle communication through LED-based headlights.