A wireless Internet connection using light

An internet connection revolution thanks to LED light: Lucibel and Sogeprom are counting on high-bandwidth Li-Fi technology.

Sogeprom, multi-business property development subsidiary of Societe Generale, and Lucibel, a French LED lighting specialist, are introducing a prototype high-bandwidth Li-Fi light, technology providing a wireless Internet connection using light that has revolutionary advantages over Wi-Fi technology.

Sogeprom: one of the first to test high-bandwidth Li-Fi in its Paris premises

An innovative and eco-friendly technology, Li-Fi uses modulated LED light to transmit information (video, sound, geopositioning) to a special receiver that decodes the signal and sends it to a computer, tablet or smartphone. This technology has been around for a few years, but only in a unidirectional low-bandwidth version (VLC - Visible Light Communication); this intelligent and connected light is now acquiring a new dimension thanks to Lucibel. Indeed, the French LED lighting specialist is introducing one of the first prototypes of new-generation bidirectional high-bandwidth Li-Fi light providing wireless Internet access via light. This major innovation has piqued the interest of Sogeprom, which has equipped a number of the meeting rooms in its Parisian premises with this technology since June, and user feedback has been very positive. Pierre Sorel, CEO of Sogeprom, says: "We strive for innovation at every level. Incorporating high-bandwidth Li-Fi in our offices is in line with this objective and fully meets our clients' expectations in terms of increased mobility, security and connectivity for users. And we are not going to stop there, as Lucibel will begin by installing high-bandwidth Li-Fi in our future head offices in La Défense and will eventually supply it to the Group's regional subsidiaries."

Major advantages that will help this technology establish itself

High-bandwidth Li-Fi opens up new horizons in terms of Internet connectivity, and notably provides:

  • An alternative to radio waves, which have potentially harmful health effects: Visible light is harmless to humans, and can even be beneficial at certain wavelengths. Li-Fi thus represents an alternative to radio waves, which is particularly important in Wi-Fi-sensitive environments such as hospitals, health centres, schools and certain industrial structures.
  • A solution to confidentiality issues: Whilst Wi-Fi can go through walls and ceilings, Li-Fi information can only be received within the cone of light. It is thus confined to the desired area and is totally secure whilst allowing roaming. There is therefore no risk of data being hacked remotely through the Li-Fi system. This system is therefore of particular interest to sectors where data security is paramount (R&D, defence, banks, security systems, etc.)
  • A solution to Wi-Fi bandwidth overload issues: The visible light spectrum is 10,000 times greater than that of Wi-Fi, thus enabling optimal coverage to be maintained whatever the number of users.
  • A solution to limited bandwidth issues: LED can theoretically transmit up to 1GB/s, i.e. 10 times more than Wi-Fi. Li-Fi is also cheaper and more eco-friendly, as it does not increase the energy consumption of buildings equipped with this technology.