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Apple working on zippy Li-Fi connectivity for the iPhone of the future?

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Apple working on zippy Li-Fi connectivity for the iPhone of the future?
Two-years ago, we told you about Li-Fi. Using pulsating streams of light, data is transmitted at extremely fast speeds, and the technology could be used in the future to replace Wi-Fi. Apple has left some clues inside iOS that could indicate that future iPhone models will be at the forefront of the movement to Li-Fi.

With Li-Fi, the same light bulb that illuminates your living room can be used to transmit data to your phone. That is because Li-Fi uses visible light. And since nothing travels faster than light, Li-Fi offers an impressive theoretical throughput speed of up to 224Gb/sec.

Since iOS 9.1, the library cache files inside the OS mention "LiFi Capabilities" right next to other capabilities. With Li-Fi, the light from the source is received by a light sensor, which converts it into an electronic signal that is read by the phone. Don't expect Li-Fi to be offered in the Apple iPhone 7, however. The technology is still undergoing testing.

Imagine a world where your phone's internet connection comes from the technology first displayed on December 31st, 1879 by Thomas Edison. We could be just a few years away from this becoming reality.

Reference to LiFi Capability appears in iOS

Reference to LiFi Capability appears in iOS

source: AppleInsider

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posted on 18 Jan 2016, 15:54

1. marorun (Posts: 3580; Member since: 30 Mar 2015)

This will be prone to lots of interference..

Bad light bulb.
Dust on the eye thing thats receive the light signal.
Movement of the user in a position thats block the light.

Ect ect ect.

So we should talk again in a few years.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 16:09 2

3. VZWuser76 (Posts: 4186; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)

One word, walls. That is why Li-Fi won't replace Wi-Fi.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 16:30

6. xondk (Posts: 1393; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)

Actually that is intended by Li-Fi, it isn't meant to replace wireless transfer completely, and because it can't go through walls or such, it also effectively means you can transfer data safer since the signal won't go beyond the room or similar, yes I'm sure someone will figure out a way to sneak up and set a transmitter next to your window, but in that case they need to be able to see the light, where as now they just need to be within wifi range.

So yeah, Li-Fi has limitations but they aren't really 'bad' ones.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 17:42

9. VZWuser76 (Posts: 4186; Member since: 04 Mar 2010)

"...and the technology could be used in the future to replace Wi-Fi."

That's from the article. Sure, it can he get see as a limited system to keep others from leeching of your connection, but the light also has to be on for it to work. And as far as it travelng at the spped of light, in a single room, the difference in speed between light and wireless is negligible. The only benefit I can really see would be for congested 2.4/5GHz signal areas, assuming this doesn't run on those frequencies.

To me this is a solution looking for a problem.

posted on 19 Jan 2016, 14:24

12. xondk (Posts: 1393; Member since: 25 Mar 2014)

Well yes, but I think that is the authors interpretation of it and not actual engineer or such that have made such statements, unless they mean in a limited scenario, for a mobile device for example, it isn't really going to be effective, since then you would need to only orientate your device in a certain manner so you didn't block light?

But yeah you are correct modern wifi is very good at what it does, though security is a concern, personally I think Li-fi will be marketed as a more secure wireless form of internet and though yes, it will need line of sight or such to source/router, so wont be for mobile devices, but home internet? yeah I could see that.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 17:19

7. RandysBuddy (Posts: 6; Member since: 08 Jul 2015)

Seems that what's being described is something similar to the Microsoft/TIMEX DataLink Watch.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 17:29 1

8. engineer-1701d (unregistered)

and wont work in many homes since they dont all have grounds, so dirty power interference will be another

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 15:55 1

2. Zylam (Posts: 755; Member since: 20 Oct 2010)

Wow look at that, in a few years light you encounter will carry data. Sci Fi movies will be awesome In the future and so will reality!

Also look:

Samsung quietly fixed the S pen issue... Screwed over all the people that bought it before... Nice work.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 16:11

4. Unordinary (Posts: 1698; Member since: 04 Nov 2015)

surprised they didn't design it better to prevent it from breaking your phone if put in backwards.

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 20:42 2

11. engineer-1701d (unregistered)

understandably right but what stupid idiot would put it in backwards and if it's your kids you are an idiot for leaving it around

posted on 18 Jan 2016, 16:26

5. theguy2345 (Posts: 1216; Member since: 24 Jun 2014)

So if it uses visible light, just turning off the lights will turn off the internet? Sounds great for real life trolling. Cannot wait for our Li-Fi future. Though the same result can happen with the microwave now. Stupid microwave...

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