In this day and age, most of us want to stay connected and be online most of the time. That is why many people have grown fond of the idea and concept of WiFi. This technology has invaded virtually all facets of human society, from business, transportation, government services, and even our humble home. Because of this, most of us have become dependent on WiFi, and we think of it as the best mode of wireless communication. That is why most people seem to be unfamiliar with LiFi, even if it has been around for several years, which is why in this article, we are going to differentiate WiFi and LiFi.
What is WiFi?
WiFi is short for Wireless Fidelity. It is the name of the wireless networking technology that uses radio waves to create a wireless network connection and give us internet access and transmit our data. WiFi is a popular form of networking technology because it allows users to browse the internet and access networks without using a physical wire between the transmitter and the device.
In order for WiFi to work, a radiofrequency current is supplied to an antenna which creates an electromagnetic field that propagates through any space. This electromagnetic field then makes an access point where users can connect and gain access. But a user will need to have a wireless network adapter in their accessing device in order for them to connect to an access point that can be accessible up to 20 to 50 meters away.
Before WiFi was invented, people used to physically connect to a modem using an Ethernet cable which was both inconvenient and bulky. If you wanted to access the internet from across a distance, like at the far end of your office, you would need to have highly long cables that can be costly and annoying. If you also want to connect several devices, you will need to add more cables which are equally expensive and time-consuming. The invention of WiFi eliminated the need for physical connections to servers to gain access to the internet and local networks. This is because the connections established through WiFi are wireless, and users can access the internet anywhere within range. As we mentioned, radio waves can penetrate through walls, so you can connect to the internet even if you’re in the other room within a 20 to a 50-meter radius from the router.
Not only that, accessing the internet through WiFi is easy to do. You need an internet service provider that gives you the internet connection and a WiFi router that will provide you with your access point. WiFi’s ease of use is the main reason for the popularity of WiFi internet access.
What is LiFi?
On the other side of things, there is LiFi which is short for Light Fidelity. It is an emerging technology that uses Visible Light Communication technology instead of radio waves to transmit data. LiFi uses solid-state lighting like LED bulbs to share data and access a wireless network or the internet. This is done by modulating the light that is given off by the transmitter, and a photodiode receives it. The signals that are received from the transmitter are translated into usable data forms that are readily consumed by the end-user. LiFi connections are typically used within the space where they are provided because of the nature of visible light.
One of life’s biggest benefits is its efficiency, and this is because LiFi uses VLC technology, which uses highly efficient LED bulbs. This way, users are able to enjoy lower costs in terms of energy consumption. Not only that, LiFi only requires working LED lights which are mostly available within most households and establishments. This allows additional savings when it comes to installation costs.
Not only that, because LiFi uses lights, it allows LiFi connections to happen almost instantaneously because light travels at fast speeds. This is why LiFi results in faster internet connections and data transmission, and according to research, it is about 100 times faster than WiFi.
We know that it can be challenging to choose over the other when comparing WiFi and LiFi because they both have their own advantages and disadvantages. This is why we need to look at these pieces of technology differently. LiFi is not here to replace WiFi, so we need to look at life as a complementary technology that aims to improve the performance of WiFi and give us a bit of relief to the congested radio spectrum that is used to provide WiFi connection.