A new technology called Li-Fi, which is potentially 100 times faster, could displace the currently operational Wi-Fi used to access the internet.
Li-Fi uses the visible spectrum of light compared to radio waves wherein, a standard LED bulb can double up as a wireless hotspot.
In its first practical test, an Estonian start-up— Velmenni used a Li-Fi enabled light bulb to transmit data at speeds of 1Gbps for allowing its workers to access the internet.
However, CEO of the company Deepak Solanki who is an alumnus of Lovely Professional University, India feels it will take another three to four years. More than the speed, Li-Fi is energy efficient as compared to the WiFis we use today.
Wi-Fi has replaced traditional methods of wired internet connections and has been in vogue for some time now especially in mobile devices for the ease of connecting to the internet wirelessly.
WI-Fi works on radio waves that allow high-speed data transfer over short distances which are adequate for general internet browsing however, for more intensive purposes such as online gaming (data heavy games) or large file sharing, it may prove to be unreliable.
Professor Harald Haas from the University of Edinburgh first introduced the concept of Li-Fi in a TED talk conference in 2011 where he spoke about how this protocol is better than Wi-Fi as it does not interfere with other radio signals and can be used in aircrafts and other places. The other advantage cited by Professor Haas was that the visible spectrum of light was wider than radio waves by 10,000 times.
However, Li-Fi can be used to provide more than just internet access.
Watch Herald Haas’s video here:
Although, the new technology looks promising but it has some limitations. It can’t work outdoors during daytime as direct sunlight will cause interference. Further, since visible light can’t pass through walls, it’s scope of operation is limited.