Apple Might be Adding Li-Fi Capabilities to Its Devices

Wednesday, 20 January 2016 - 12:30PM
Wednesday, 20 January 2016 - 12:30PM
It seems like only yesterday that we first heard about Li-Fi, super fast wireless communication technology transmitted through LED lights. In fact, it was in November 2015 that the technology first began to be tested in real-world situations.

Just a few short months later, and Apple may already be experimenting with LI-Fi wireless communication.

According to code in iOS.9.1 firmware, Li-Fi is on the way. First spotted by developer Chase Fromm, and confirmed by AppleInsider, the operating system's library cache file makes mention of "LiFi Capability", alongside other hardware and software capabilities. 

In addition to the software, Apple is known to be working on hardware implementations for light-based wireless data transfer, or optical wireless communication. They also currently hold a parent for a method of "Optical modulation using an image sensor." The sensor in question could be switched between image capture and data capture modes, allowing for light capabilities without adding additional hardware. If successful, this method means that even people with previous generations of iPhones could reap the benefits of Li-Fi - once Apple releases it, that is. 

Li-Fi technology might only just be within reaching distance now, but it's actually a technology that has been predicted for some time now. In a 2011 Ted Talk, Harald Haas discussed what a world with Li-Fi might be like, predicting that just about every device capable of transmitting light will eventually be able to double up as a wireless data transmitter.

Opening quote
"In the future we will not only have 14 billion light bulbs, we may have 14 billion Li-Fis deployed worldwide for a cleaner, greener and even brighter future."
Closing quote


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