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Wi-Fi Technology

March 30, 2012

Wi-Fi Technology

WI-Fi is the trade name for the popular wireless technology used in home networks, mobile phones, video games and more. It uses radio waves to provide wireless high-speed Internet and network connections. The Wi-Fi Alliance, the organization that owns the Wi-Fi (registered trademark) term specifically defines Wi-Fi as any “wireless local area network (WLAN) products that are based on the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers.

Wi-Fi is a globally used wireless networking technology that uses the 802.11 standard. The term WiFi is an abbreviation of ‘wireless fidelity’. The technology used in WiFi was developed in 1997 by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).

How Wireless Networks Works?

Wireless networks operate usingRadio frequency (RF) technology, a frequency within the electromagnetic spectrum associated with radio wave propagation. When an RF current is supplied to an antenna, an electromagnetic field is created that then is able to propagate through space.

The cornerstone of a wireless network is a device known as an access point (AP). The primary job of an access point is to broadcast a wireless signal that computers can detect and “tune” into. Since wireless networks are usually connected to wired ones, an access point also often serves as a link to the resources available on the a wired network, such as an Internet connection.

In order to connect to an access point and join a wireless network, computers must be equipped with wireless network adapters. These are often built right into the computer, but if not, just about any computer or notebook can be made wireless-capable through the use of an add-on adapter plugged into an empty expansion slot, USB port, or in the case of nooks, a PC Card slot

Is Wi-Fi the same as Bluetooth?

No. While both are wireless technology terms, Bluetooth technology lives under the IEEE protocol 802.15.1, while Wi Fi falls under the 802.11 specification. What this means for consumers is that appliances using Wi Fi technology and those using Bluetooth technology are not interoperable.

Difference Between Wi-Fi & Bluetooth Technology

Bluetooth and Wi-Fi are different in several ways, and are not necessarily in competition. Wi-Fi technology boasts faster data transfer speeds and range, making it a good replacement for Ethernet (802.3) systems, while Bluetooth requires less power and is therefore more prominent in small appliances, such as PDAs.

WI-Fi In Apple’s iPhone :

Apple uses the Skyhook’s Wireless Technology in its iPhone & iPod Touch for the new Wi-Fi location positioning feature in its Maps application. Using WPS, iPhone and iPod touch users can now locate themselves in the popular Maps application with the tap of one button.

How & Where Wi-Fi is used?

1. A Wi-Fi enabled device such as a PC, game console, mobile phone, MP3 player or PDA can connect to the Internet when within range of a wireless network connected to the Internet.

2. Wi-Fi can make access publicly available at Wi-Fi hotspots provided either free of charge or to subscribers to various providers. Organizations and businesses such as airports, hotels and restaurants often provide free hotspots to attract or assist clients.

3. Enthusiasts or authorities who wish to provide services or even to promote business in a given area sometimes provide free Wi-Fi access.

4. Wi-Fi also allows connectivity in peer-to-peer (wireless ad-hoc network) mode, which enables devices to connect directly with each other. This connectivity mode can prove useful in consumer electronics and gaming applications.

5. Mobile computers can connect to the Internet from any Wi-Fi hotspot, and digital cameras can transfer images wirelessly.

6. Routers which incorporate a DSL-modem or a cable-modem and a Wi-Fi access point, often set up in homes and other premises, provide Internet-access and internetworking to all devices connected (wirelessly or by cable) to them. One can also connect Wi-Fi devices in ad-hoc mode for client-to-client connections without a router.

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