Philips Lighting introduces its LiFi technology which is a high quality LED lighting that provides broadband Internet connection through light waves. It is the first global lighting company to offer LiFi-enabled luminaires from its existing office lighting portfolio.
LiFi is a two-way, high-speed wireless technology similar to WiFi but instead, it uses light waves instead of radio waves to transmit data. The Lighting’s office luminaires enabled with LiFi technology provide a broadband connection with a speed of 30 Mbps without compromising lighting quality.
Icade, the French real estate investment company is piloting the technology in its smart office in La Defense, Paris. The company claims that LiFi technology offers benefits over WiFi as it can be used in places where radio frequencies may interfere with equipment, or where WiFi signals cannot reach or are weak. It can also come useful in environments demanding high security, etc. LiFi adds an extra layer of security as light cannot pass through solid walls, and a line-of-sight to the light is needed to access the network.
The LiFi technology has each luminaire equipped with a built-in modem that modulates the light at speeds that is not predictable to the human eye. The light is then detected by the LiFi USB key/dongle plugged into the socket of a laptop or tablet. The LiFi USB dongle returns data to the luminaire through an infrared link. This results in gets double the quality, and a robust connection as LiFi has 10,000 times the spectrum of WiFi. The company is offering LiFi-enabled Philips PowerBalance gen2 and Philips LuxSpace downlight luminaires.
Commenting on the new technology, Olivia Qiu, Chief Innovation Officer, Philips Lighting said:
LiFi has enormous potential for today’s digital age and as the world’s leading lighting company we are proud to pioneer new and innovative services for our customers. While radio frequencies are becoming congested, the visible light spectrum is an untapped resource with a large bandwidth suitable for the stable simultaneous connection of a vast array of the Internet of Things devices. Being a lighting company, we ensure that our customers benefit from the finest quality energy efficient light along with state-of-the-art connectivity.
Emmanuelle Baboulin, Head of the Commercial Property Investment Division at Icade said:
LiFi has the potential to be a real game changer in offices. As the leader in our market we wanted to explore the possibilities of this technology for existing and future clients. We plan to showcase the technology in our smart office in La Defense, so aside from stable connectivity, light quality is crucial to us.