In 2018, wires will become increasingly passé
Bangalore, January 22, 2018: The time has come to cut that cord and take off to a new wire-free world. Many of our most personal technologies are transiting from wired to wireless, making life, simpler and untangled. Consider:
Almost all new speakers in the market and most headphones, now harness Bluetooth to untether themselves. Your music source could be a player or a phone, up to 10 metres away. The days have gone when you needed to connect an ethernet cable to get Internet in a hotel room or a broadband connection from the home router: it's all WiFi now. You can download photos from recent DSLR cameras to a laptop or PC, wirelessly . Even if you have an older camera, you can still do wireless transfers if you use wireless embedded SDHC memory cards like Toshiba's FlashAir. When you buy a new smart phone, chances are you also invest in a small wireless earpiece for hands-free listening, while on the move. We use to classify people seemingly talking to themselves while walking as barmy. Now everyone seems to be doing it.
Bluetooth and WiFi may be the most pervasive wireless technologies; but there are others: NFC or Near Field communication, allows you to wave your phone at a Point of Sale rather than swiping a card to pay. Increasingly hand phones will come with all three wireless technologies: WiFi, Bluetooth and NFC.
To that, add another technology: Gigabit wireless -- wireless communications at 1 GB/sec or faster. Lattice Communications has been evangelizing its SiBEAM wireless technology at gigabit speeds at very low power. This may soon provide an alternative to physical connectors like USB. It is based on the next generation of the WiFi standard -- 802.11ad which is five times faster than the fastest WiFi today.
More usefully it uses the 60 GHz spectrum which, worldwide, is unlicensed and free to use. Already Gigabit wireless has proved capable to sharing bandwidth-intensive data like 4K ultra high definition video -- which opens up very exciting possibilities not just for wire-free home entertainment but medical and surgical applications.
Notebook PCs, tablets, action cameras, can all become thinner and lighter once physical ports for connections are removed. It's happening to phones too: starting with the iPhone, many newer handsets have altogether eliminated the 3.5 mm audio port. But chances are, wireless chargers, will be the next big lurch that your phone makes into the new wireless world. (See Image of the day for Wireless charging options)