New wireless technology developed in part by the CSIRO in Australia is set to help a consortium of Companies including Apple, Intel and Cisco, to launch a new wireless technology called Wi Fi Direct.
Companies like Intel are already briefing retailers on the technology which is set to be shown in working products at next year’s CES show in Las Vegas in January.
According to the Wi Fi Alliance, the new Wi Fi Direct technology will turn a variety of consumer electronics gadgets into instant hot spots.
Set to be launched in mid 2010, the new technology will make it easier for users of consumer electronics to exchange files between electronic gadgets including TV’s receivers and PC’s as well as personal video recorders equipped with Wi Fi.
The new technology will in effect turn gadgets into mini access points, able to create wireless connections with other Wi-Fi-enabled gadgets or broadband modems within a radius of about 91 metres.
Built directly into consumer electronics it will automatically scan the vicinity for existing hotspots and other Wi-Fi devices, including phones, computers, TVs, and gaming consoles. Owners of most existing Wi-Fi-enabled devices will be able to upgrade to Wi-Fi Direct with a simple software download.
The alliance includes more than 300 vendors including Cisco, Microsoft, Intel, Apple and a host of Hi Fi and TV manufacturers who are now manufacturing iPod docks, receivers and TV devices with Wi Fi built in.
The new technology could have a downside for several vendors including makers of Wireless routers and Bluetooth gear.
According to experts Wi Fi Direct will disrupt usage of wireless Bluetooth technology used in devices like the Apple iPhone.
In the future, some consumers may use Wi-Fi Direct instead. Though Wi-Fi connectivity tends to drain battery life faster than Bluetooth, it’s also faster and allows for transfer of richer multimedia content like video.
According to BusinessWeek, members of the Wi-Fi Alliance plan to promote their new technology with a major marketing blitz. Intel has already begun briefing retailers, who will promote the feature in their stores, says Gary Martz, senior product manager at Intel. The chipmaker will also heavily promote the capability in the first quarter of 2010 as it unveils its next-generation Wi-Fi chip package for computers.