LIFI and WIFI work together to be the best

Who will replace LIFI and WIFI in the end, in fact, there is no need to fight for your life, like bicycles and cars, each with its own benefits. WIFI network speed is general, but it is convenient to see the webpage button buckle, and the signal has no dead ends. The outbreak of LIFI in the market needs to be recognized by the entire industry chain, and the market needs to be tested. The development path of LIFI is likely to solve the technical bottleneck and standardization problems like Bluetooth and WIFI technology, and then it can gradually form large-scale industrialization and even enter the consumer market.

However, even if LIFI is not an alternative to WIFI technology in the early days, the two systems can be applied in parallel to build a more efficient network. Perhaps, LIFI and WIFI complement each other and complement each other, which is the ideal mode. In crowded urban areas, or where some use of WiFi may affect security, such as on an airplane or in a hospital where WiFi is affecting the use of electronic medical devices, LiFi has the potential to complement WiFi.

According to the British BBC News, LiFi, a new data transmission method using visible spectrum rather than radio waves as a carrier, is being tested in a working room in Estonia. LiFi can connect to the network 100 times faster than traditional WiFi, which is up to 1 Gbit/s.

It requires only one light source, such as a standard LED bulb ; a network connection; and a control unit. In layman's terms, LiFi technology uses various visible light sources as signal sources to control the on and off of the lights through the controller, thereby controlling the communication between the light source and the terminal receiver.

The equipment is being tested at Velmenni in Tallinn, Estonia. Velmenni uses a light bulb that can transmit LiFi signals to achieve a 1Gbit/s transmission rate in the working environment, and the test results under laboratory ideal conditions can reach a maximum transfer rate of 224Gbit/s. The test environment includes an office that allows Internet access and a factory space that provides flexible lighting. Deepak Solanki, president of Velmenni, told the International Financial Times that the technology is expected to be put into market application within three to four years.

LiFi's technical concept was first proposed in 2011 by Professor Harold Haas of the University of Edinburgh in the United Kingdom at the TED (Global Technology Entertainment Design) conference. In a speech of nearly 2 million hits, he not only showed how to transmit video with an LED light, but more interestingly, Professor Haas described the future of a multi-billion LED bulb as a wireless hotspot. world.

Professor Haas established PureLiFi (also known as PureVLC) in 2012 and successfully implemented the initial application of optical transmission data. In 2013, PureVLC, the chief scientific officer of Harold Haas, sold the first LiFi device to a US healthcare provider for £5,000 (about RMB 49,300). Later, Estonia's Velmenni company began investing in this technology.

The biggest advantage of LiFi technology is that it is different from WiFi, it does not interfere with other radio signals, so it can be used on airplanes and other occasions where electromagnetic compatibility issues need to be considered. Another big advantage is that the spectrum of the visible light band is 10,000 times larger than that of the radio with limited frequency spectrum. This means that the bandwidth of a single data channel can be made large in the LiFi network, and it can accommodate more channels. Parallel transmission, which greatly increases the overall transmission rate.

In addition, cellular networks and WiFi devices that are widely used at present have the problems of large heat generation and low energy conversion rate. For example, the equipment in a cellular network base station is not high in frequency, but its energy conversion rate is less than 10%, and the remaining 90% of the energy is converted into heat, and it is often necessary to introduce a cooling device to maintain normal operation. LiFi does not have this problem, and the extremely low heat generation makes it stable without the need for cooling equipment.

The last is its high security. First of all, the characteristics of light determine that it can't transmit signals through the wall, which means that its security is very strong, and the phenomenon of "cracking net" that often occurs in WiFi use can be effectively avoided. At the same time, unlike the shared channel WiFi, LiFi's uplink and downlink channels operate independently. The hacker must be in the same room and invade both channels to complete a real attack.

However, the shortcomings of this technology are also obvious. The biggest problem is that the signal can be disturbed by sunlight, which makes it impossible to use outdoors in the sun. This is obviously unfriendly to the majority of mobile users. According to Deepak Solanki, president of Velmenni, to make LiFi technology truly popular, it is first necessary to build a large-scale infrastructure dedicated to LiFi technology, but this is obviously not practical at the moment. So Velmenni is also considering improving the technology to make LiFi compatible with existing equipment.

According to relevant experts, as of the end of November 2015, the number of published patent applications related to visible light communication technology has exceeded 4,400 worldwide. The number of open patent applications and the number of patent applicants per year has shown a rapid growth trend, and more than 1,400 have been disclosed since 2014 and 2015.

It is worth noting that China's research in the field of visible light communication started late, but it seems to have come to the fore. In 2013, China's Ministry of Science and Technology launched the first research work on the high-tech research and development program (National 863 Program) and the National Major Basic Research and Development Program (National 973 Program) for visible light communication. Today, the number of related patent applications in China is the first in the world, reaching more than 1,700. However, enterprises and institutions are still at the research stage. As far as LiFi is concerned, the products currently produced in large scale have not yet appeared.

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