Li-Fi Technology: Surf the Internet When Turn on the Light, Faster than Wi-Fi?

In the era of rapid network development, Wi-Fi makes it possible to surf the Internet anytime and anywhere. With the development of science and technology, Wi-Fi wireless Internet technology has brought us a convenient and efficient network experience. In contrast, Li-Fi technology is little known, so what kind of technology is it?

What is Li-Fi?

Li-Fi (Light Fidelity) is a kind of visible light wireless communication, also known as optical fidelity technology, which is a kind of technology that uses light emitted by a bulb to transmit data. It implants tiny chips into LED bulbs to form a device similar to the Wi-Fi hotspot, which is convenient for terminal devices to connect to the Internet at any time.

Relying on lights to surf the Internet may sound amazing, but the basic principles of Li-Fi technology are actually not complicated. Adding a microchip to an ordinary LED bulb, the system can control it to blink millions of times per second.

“0” and “1” are the most basic signals in digital transmission. What needs to be done is to set the light off state to “0” and the on state to “1”. The photosensitive sensor could receive these changes, and in this way, the binary data is quickly encoded into a light signal.

The effective transmission of digital signals can be realized by turning off and turning on the light. The computer or mobile phone under the light can read the “Morse code” in the light through a set of the special receiving device, so as to communicate successfully.

However, because the device needs to be turned on and off at a high frequency, not all types of lights can use Li-F. The traditional incandescent lamp has a short life and its response time is slow, while LED lights can be switched on and off repeatedly, with a response time of nanoseconds.

Therefore, LED lights provide a technical basis for the realization of Li-Fi.

In addition, the chip implanted in the LED bulb will make the light flicker at a high speed. The human eyes cannot perceive this high-frequency light and shade change, so it does not affect the lighting effect.

As for the photosensitive sensor, it can detect this changes of the light, so Li-Fi is compatible with the light data transmission function and the lighting function.


Li-Fi is conceptually very similar to Wi-Fi, but there is one major difference: Instead of radio base stations and Wi-Fi routers, Li-Fi technology uses LED electric lighting devices and bulbs as access points. In addition, Li-Fi also has many technical and functional advantages.

  • High security

Currently, the biggest challenge facing Wi-Fi is security. Especially with the increasing popularity of smart devices in homes and workplaces, Wi-Fi is vulnerable to attacks, which makes users vulnerable to attacks by cybercriminals, resulting in the disclosure of private information.

Li-Fi can make up for the security flaws. This is because it is difficult to control radio waves, but it is relatively easy to restrict the beam. In other words, Li-Fi signals are more secure because they cannot “leak” outside of a specific scene space like radio signals. It can be blocked by simply putting the device in the pocket or close the door.

Therefore, using Li-Fi means that we can more easily control other people’s access to the network, and the security of the Internet will be greatly improved.

  • Low interference

As we all know, Wi-Fi will cause Electromagnetic Interference, which affects aircraft equipment and medical equipment. What’s more, it is potentially dangerous for power generation, oil and gas drilling. Therefore, Wi-Fi is not suitable for use in electromagnetic sensitive areas, such as airplanes and hospitals.

In addition, it still has the possibility of electromagnetic wave leakage, which is not suitable for transmission where information confidentiality is required. Li-Fi uses light instead of radio waves, and there are no problems such as electromagnetic interference. Use curtains to block the light so that information will not be leaked to other places.

  • Fast transmission speed

The visible light communication that Li-Fi relies on has gone through years of research and development, and it can surpass Wi-Fi in transmission speed.

In 2000, Japanese researchers proposed and simulated an indoor communication system that uses LED lighting as a communication base station for wireless transmission of information. At this time, the transmission rate of optical communication is only tens of KB per second.

In 2010, the team of the Fraunhofer Institute in Germany increased the communication rate to 513Mbps, setting a world record.

In 2013, British researchers increased the offline speed to 10Gbps.

In 2015, China researchers increased the real-time communication rate to 50Gbps.

So far, researchers at Oxford University have completed a 100Gbps visible light communication test. It is predicted that the highest rate of the communication system can reach 3Tbps

  • Development Prospect

Li-Fi uses LED bulbs to transmit data through light waves and can provide both lighting and wireless networking. Not only can it avoid electromagnetic interference, but it also can alleviate the problem of today’s explosive increase in network traffic, so the development prospects are very promising.

The development potential of Li-Fi is obvious, with a wide range of applications, including indoor networks, sensor networks, intelligent traffic lights, and medical care. It can be applied to multiple smart scenarios.

We can imagine that there will be a large number of smart home devices in the future. A desk lamp or a living room chandelier is scattered to store our most important digital information. This information can only be accessed through light,  and only you know where they exist in. In the digital age, this is equivalent to the digital safe box in the home.

In today’s interconnected world, using Li-Fi will become more and more common. Compared with Wi-Fi, Li-Fi can achieve larger broadband and higher speed, and its network settings hardly require any new infrastructure. The advantages of Li-Fi include its immunity to radio wave interference, energy saving, environmental protection and so on.

In general, Li-Fi has realized that where there is light, there is the wireless network. Under the two-way cooperation with Wi-Fi, the realization of wireless data transmission will become more complete, safe, and efficient, leading the new smart life.

Tags : LED LightsLi-Fi TechnologyLight Wireless Communication

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