Scientists have unveiled a new wireless technology that is able to transfer data at speeds of 1 Gbps outside of lab settings.
Called Li-Fi, the technology, invented in 2011, sends data using nanosecond flickers of LED lights. In the lab, it had reached speeds of up to 224 Gbps, yet even in real-life conditions, tested in offices and industrial environments, the rate is 100 times faster than Wi-Fi.
“[LED] intensity can be modulated at very high speeds and it can be switched off at very high speeds,” Harald Haas, professor of mobile communications, at the University of Edinburgh, said on the TED stage in 2011.
Li-Fi would need to be applied differently than Wi-Fi, which can penetrate solid objects. It requires receivers to be able to detect light, in other words, be in the same space. However, using LEDs means that every lightbulb in every room can essentially act as a transmitter, eliminating the need for penetration. It even reduces the potential for unauthorized access, and according to Haas, is able to make use of 10,000 times more spectrum and infrastructure.
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