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Difference between LiFi and Visible Light Communication(VLC) | LiFi vs VLC

This page compares LiFi vs VLC and describes basic difference between LiFi and Visible Light Communication (VLC) technologies. LiFi stands for Light Fidelity.

Introduction:
LiFi is wireless optical networking based technology which uses LEDs for transmission of data and photodiodes for reception of data. LiFi uses part of Visible light spectrum in order to deliver high speed communication like WiFi uses radio waves. Lifi specifications are defined in IEEE 802.15.7 standard. LiFi delivers better bandwidth, efficiency, connectivity and security compare to wifi system.

LiFi - A VLC Technology

Li-Fi internet architecture

Following are the features of LiFi technology as depicted in the figure-1.
• LiFi (Light Fidelity) works based on VLC (Visible Light Communication) principle.
• LiFi transmits data using light intensity modulation.
• It uses LEDs at transmit ends and Photo-detectors at receive ends. LiFi dongle uses photo-detectors as shown in the figure-1. Here LEDs are connected with internet server via lamp driver for internet connection.
• Li-Fi uses visible light of spectrum between 400 THz to 800 THz. It uses optical carrier in this range for data transmission and illumination purpose.
• Data speeds of about 1GBps has be achieved in laboratory tests.
• LiFi system supports three modes viz. peer to peer, star and broadcast.
• LiFi system uses modulation schemes such as OOK, VPPM, CSK.
• The PHY and MAC layers of LiFi system are defined in IEEE 802.15.7 standard.
• LiFi technology is used for various applications which include street lights, sign boards, internet etc. • It transfers data very rapidly and securely due LOS (Line of Sight) operation of optical signals. Refer LiFi tutorial >> and advantages and disadvantages of LiFi technology >> for more information.

EM spectrum showing VLC, Infrared parts

Though there are no major differences between them. Following points summarize subtle difference between lifi and vlc terminologies.
➤LiFi is the short form of Light Fidelity and VLC is the short form of Visible Light Communication.
➤VLC technology uses visible light part of the light spectrum where as LiFi technology uses any possible light spectrum for communication.
➤There are many applications of wireless communication viz. wifi, gsm, satellite, lte etc. Similarly lifi is one of the many applications of VLC (Visible Light Communication).
➤Unlike VLC applications, infrared light is being tested in LiFi for communication. Speeds of about 40 Gbps has been achieved.



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