I am spending the week in France to learn more about LiFi and better understand applications for this emerging technology. France is a hotbed for LiFi and I am determined to find out why there is so much LiFi in France. There are two types of LiFi: Bi-directional and Mono-directional. Today I witnessed my first live demonstration of the one-way LiFi, which is used in retail, museums, and hospitals. I downloaded an app and then moved my phone under three different lights. Each time I moved under a different light a new screen popped up to represent what was happening in that specific location. Imagine downloading an app at a museum, which you are visiting, walk in front of a painting and the details of that painting pop up on your app. Move three feet to the next painting and, voila, those details are instantly loaded. I saw examples of text, video, and what looked like a powerpoint slide show—all instantly on my screen while under the appropriate light.
Mono-directional LiFi uses the camera in the phone, but it does not capture images, so there is no worry about excessive battery loss. During the demonstration we were able to communicate even when our phone was above the luminaire. This is because reflected light works quite well.
Mono-directional LiFi is a great product and it is my belief that this technology LiFi, will establish itself in the US before the bi-directional LiFi.