When Philips announced during its CES event that it was working on a new line of Hue lights for outdoors, little did we know that the company was planning a complete overhaul of its lighting business. The creator of the Hue smart bulbs has now decided to rebrand itself as Signify to make way for moulding the way light is used in the future, but it’s to be noted that Philips will still be using its original brand name when selling the same.
Aside from the renaming, Signify has also unveiled the Philips LiFi (Light-fidelity) Systems which will allow users transfer data with the help of specialised LED bulbs that modulates light for optical data transmission. While the technology behind the Light-fidelity has been there for a while, this is the first time it’ll be made available commercially.
The move comes a year after Philips acquired French LiFi company Luciom which made its breakthrough by embedding lighting equipment with broadband internet. The technology involves a wireless network built onto LED bulbs through which data can be transmitted with the help of light waves, replacing the radio waves in WiFi.
With its newest LiFI systems, Philips claims that users can expect higher speeds than WiFi; owing to the frequency spectrum of light being 10000 times more than radio waves. Thus, offices installed with the latest Philips luminaries will achieve close to 30Mb/sec data speeds downstream with a larger connectivity range. In addition to this, LiFi’s wireless technology is also secure due to the fact that data can’t be intercepted without a clear line of sight which is also why the system won’t allow overlapping through the neighbouring networks.
While the speed on its own isn’t much to be surprised about, the fact that all of this comes off a light bulb is more than adequate to look forward to, since a stable LiFi system is still in the making.