For the uninitiated like myself, here’s an explainer on what exactly Li-Fi technology does:
Li-Fi (Light Fidelity) is a bidirectional, high speed and fully networked wireless communication technology similar to Wi-Fi. The term was coined by Harald Haas and is a form of visible light communication and a subset of optical wireless communications (OWC) and could be a complement to RF communication (Wi-Fi or Cellular network), or even a replacement in contexts of data broadcasting. It is so far measured to be about 100 times faster than some Wi-Fi implementations, reaching speeds of 224 gigabits per second.
It is wireless and uses visible light communication or infra-red and near ultraviolet (instead of radio frequency waves) spectrum, part of optical wireless communications technology, which carries much more information, and has been proposed as a solution to the RF-bandwidth limitations.
Connecting your smartphone to the web with just a lamp — that is the promise of Li-Fi, featuring Internet access 100 times faster than Wi-Fi with revolutionary wireless technology.
“Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience:”Ephesians 2:2 (KJV)
The Bible calls Satan the “prince of the power of the air” and also calls him Lucifer, which means “light bearer”. The Bible also goes on to say that “And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.” in 2 Corinthians 11:14. Li-Fi sounds like something that the Devil could have invented. Remember, it’s called the Web for a reason.
French start-up Oledcomm demonstrated the technology at the Mobile World Congress, the world’s biggest mobile fair, in Barcelona. As soon as a smartphone was placed under an office lamp, it started playing a video. (Surpassing all projections, Mobile World Congress – the world’s biggest and most influential mobile event – had a record-breaking 94,000+ attendees from 200 countries in 2015.)
The big advantage of Li-Fi, short for “light fidelity”, is its lightning speed.
Laboratory tests have shown theoretical speeds of over 200 Gbps — fast enough to “download the equivalent of 23 DVDs in one second”, the founder and head of Oledcomm, Suat Topsu, told AFP.
“Li-Fi allows speeds that are 100 times faster than Wi-Fi” which uses radio waves to transmit data, he added.
The technology uses the frequencies generated by LED bulbs — which flicker on and off imperceptibly thousands of times a second — to beam information through the air, leading it to be dubbed the “digital equivalent of Morse Code”.
It started making its way out of laboratories in 2015 to be tested in everyday settings in France, a Li-Fi pioneer, such as a museums and shopping malls. It has also seen test runs in Belgium, Estonia and India.
Dutch medical equipment and lighting group Philips is reportedly interested in the technology and Apple may integrate it in its next smartphone, the iPhone 7, due out at the end of the year, according to tech media.
With analysts predicting the number of objects that are connected to the Internet soaring to 50 million by 2020 and the spectrum for radio waves used by Wi-Fi in short supply, Li-Fi offers a viable alternative, according to its promoters.
“We are going to connect our coffee machine, our washing machine, our tooth brush. But you can’t have more than ten objects connected in Bluetooth or Wi-Fi without interference,” said Topsu.
Deepak Solanki, the founder and chief executive of Estonian firm Velmenni which tested Li-fi in an industrial space last year, told AFP he expected that “two years down the line the technology can be commercialised and people can see its use at different levels.”
“And he said unto them, I beheld Satan as lightning fall from heaven.” Luke 10:18 (KJV)