Get LiFi internet in Dubai through streetlights 'this year'

Time Out has news of plans by Zero 1 to launch Dubai internet through streetlights in Silicon Oasis by the end of 2016, in partnership with du

Dubai is to start delivering internet to users on the go through street lights.

That's the announcement from UAE company Zero 1 who have outlined their plans to roll out the super speed LiFi service in Silicon Oasis this year.

The technology, also known as Light Fidelity, has in 'real world condition' trials generated speeds of one gigabyte per second, essentially allowing the user to download high definition movies in a matter of seconds. In a laboratory setting, that figure was even more impressive, hitting 224GB a second.

Unlike the more traditional Wi-Fi which uses radio waves, this new technology transmits data through LED bulbs switching on and off too fast to be noticed by human eye, hence why streetlights are the perfect vehicle for it.

Speaking at the announcement, Marc Fleschen, CEO of Zero.1 said: "We are proud to say that in conjunction with our project partner du, we have been able to initiate the first demonstration of its kind in the Middle East. Working with du we look forward to the roll-out of our LiFi applications in the Dubai ‘Smart City’ platform and the retail sector as the year unfolds.”

Dubai was first made aware of the potential of the technology coming to the UAE last month, when du revealed they had partnered with Zero 1 to trial the service.

"We are currently working with major businesses to create tailor-made Li-Fi solutions and to test and validate the applications so that we can ensure we offer the latest in innovation to our valued customers," Saleem Al Balooshi, executive vice president at du, said in a statement.

"The recent demonstration of Li-Fi adds further impetus to the initiative of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of UAE and Ruler of Dubai, in establishing the UAE as a global leader in all aspects and as an innovator in technology in the Middle East region," he added.

The Li-Fi industry is expected to be worth almost Dhs300 billion by 2021.

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