By Saloni Walimbe
The Li-Fi industry is constantly touching new heights, especially at a time when IoT is proliferating in every sector and the use of smart, connected technologies is at an all-time high. The demand for wireless connectivity that can meet the ever-increasing need for data communication is growing. With ongoing advances in IoT and 5G, the world needs a faster and more convenient way for communication, one that’s away from the radio frequency spectrum.
The commercial sector is likely to emerge as a leading adopter of Li-Fi solutions, providing users with uninterrupted and hassle-free highspeed internet connectivity. The technology has immense potential in a variety of public infrastructure applications. Li-Fi integrated streetlights, for example, could provide wireless connectivity and targeted communications to smartphone users, while Li-Fi enabled traffic lights could be used to connect with vehicles.
Smart and connected spaces are expected to be the future of buildings and public spaces. Smart lighting being ubiquitous, the scope for highspeed internet access through lighting in commercial buildings, public areas, roads, bridges, and other commercial establishments is definitely high.
Reports claim that the global Li-Fi market size will be worth over US$8 billion by the year 2030. Besides notable adoption in private buildings, digital advancement of commercial areas is also a part of developing smart city initiatives, which could drive the overall market outlook.
According to Global Market Insights, the Li-Fi industry share in North America could surpass US$2.5 billion by 2030. The commercial sector will be a prominent contributor to this growth, due to the financial scale of public projects and the ability of contractors to harness the latest technologies at convenient value.
The never-ending need for commercial infrastructure solutions in the U.S. indicates that the construction sector will boom in the next few years. Government spending on commercial construction is rising steadily. According to a report by the Associated General Contractors of America published in March 2020, public construction investments jumped by 12.6% compared to a year earlier, including highway and street construction spending which increased by over 11.7%.
As smart city projects and initiatives gain momentum, these numbers are slated to grow substantially, opening up an array of opportunities for the local Li-Fi solutions providers. In June last year, Oregon-based HomeGrid Forum had joined hands with tech firm UVAX to accelerate the growth and deployment of a smart city solution. HomeGrid Forum has been a leader in seamless interconnectivity, covering Li-Fi communications, IoT, and other smart tech.
According to UVAX, today’s public lighting, which makes up a significant share of a city’s electricity bill, is an underutilized and expensive infrastructure. The company has been focusing on designing solutions to deliver seamless internet connectivity and improve smart city services.
As per the partnership, UVAX will leverage HomeGrid Forum’s G.hn technology to advance its Connected Street Lighting (CSL) solution. The UVAX CSL technology integrates internet access points, among other features such as sensor networks, video surveillance, and EV charging stations. The nascent technology has the potential to be a key part of the services delivered by commercial contractors for private and government customers.
Remote control and scalability are among the key benefits of the technology, which could enable its widespread deployment in adaptive public lighting, highway safety systems and information panels.
At the virtual All Digital CES exhibition held in January 2021, California based SLD Laser had announced the launch of LaserLight, the world’s first dual emission infrared (IT) white light laser source. It can be deployed for for highspeed Li-Fi communications, night vision illumination, automotive, and consumer lighting applications.
Utilizing its new white light/IR dual emission LaserLight technology, SLD lasers plans to offer a commercial Li-Fi development kit with a 1gbps data rate, enabling customers to integrate Li-Fi with emerging optical communication applications. These include smart streetlights, smart public spaces, and smart connectivity in commercial buildings, such as offices and healthcare facilities.
The number of new project orders for development of systems based on Li-Fi had skyrocketed in recent years, according to Signify, formerly known as Philips Lighting. The company had estimated that the number of project orders would nearly double during 2020. Over the past few years, Signify has deployed hundreds of Li-Fi systems in office buildings and other commercial spaces such as hotels and hospitals.
Back in June 2019, the company had rolled out the first commercial Li-Fi technology called Trulifi. The technology uses optical wireless transceivers embedded into Philips lights. According to the company, employees can use a USB access key to receive Li-Fi signal with wireless speeds of up to 150 Mbps. Imagine these components deployed in various applications across government offices, highway systems, and V2X solutions. It certainly indicates new possibilities for commercial developers to gain an edge over conventional tech-only firms.
As the COVID-19 pandemic continued to impact businesses in every sector, the U.S. witnessed the rollout of new government initiatives to support businesses and revive the country’s economy. In the construction sector, initiatives and programs at the federal, state, and local levels were introduced to help bolster infrastructure development.
In September 2020, the U.S. Department of Transportation had unveiled Infrastructure for Rebuilding America (INFRA) discretionary grant program to invest more than US$906 million throughout the country. As part of the program, about 20 projects in 20 states will be aimed at improving major highways, railroads, and bridges across the country.
With higher awareness of the technology among contractors and considering the ever-growing need for seamless internet connectivity anytime and anywhere, the widespread implementation of Li-Fi technology could help transform the way public services and safety is enhanced.
As the world moves into the internet of everything era, each and every device will be connected to the internet, and Wi-Fi would not be capable of handling all the internet traffic. Li-Fi, the technology that combines illumination and wireless data transmission, could be a suitable solution for the problem.
About The Author
Saloni Walimbe a content writer for Global Market Insights, providing articles relating to global industry trends, business, and trade and finance. For more, visit www.gminsights.com.
Modern Contractor Solutions, May 2021
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