If you’ve had a look over Research and Market’s latest forecast, it would seem that there is a current surge in the demand for Wi-Fi to be present in all the consumer electronics devices that one expects to find in a connected home. The rising popularity of over-the-top (OTT) content delivered by services like Netflix or Hulu or through on-line media players like BBC’s iPlayer has determined new connectivity options to appear among the standard configurations of digital TVs, set-top boxes or game consoles. Every Wi-Fi Direct equipped device can now take advantage of what the internet can offer but also communicate more naturally between each other.

A new statistic from In-Stat reveals that due to the rapid growth of the home entertainment market we should expect to see Wi-Fi equipped video devices to approach 600 million in 2015. That includes all of the above but also what industry insiders call “second screens”, such as smartphones or tablets, which can allow for both dual streaming of independent content (think viewing two separate YouTube videos at the same time) or perhaps multi-viewpoint mosaicked and paralleled perspective, like we’ve shown in our previous blog post on the future of TVs. Another interesting finding relates to how digital TVs will reach 40% WLAN-attach rate by 2015 while the report also mentions around 30 million Blu-Ray players that will come equipped with Wi-Fi capabilities in 2013.

 

Samsung Galaxy Nexus has built-in Wi-Fi Direct support

Wi-Fi Direct explained

This means that Wi-Fi has stopped being labelled as an optional feature that comes as a premium on top of other standard characteristics. It is now a must-have for tomorrow’s technology in order for it to match consumer expectations. Furthermore, Wi-Fi is not just about connecting your device to the network, which can sometimes be a tedious process (especially for equipment like desk printers or network attached storage which have no screens or other forms of input), but also enabling peer-to-peer connectivity.

Wi-Fi Direct provides the possibility for ad-hoc connections between devices without the need for a router or any other central network element to oversee the process. It has emerged as a new technology and an alternative to Bluetooth, offering a better connection and further reach. It will not replace traditional Wi-Fi connectivity models but rather build on their experience and enhance the possibilities offered by traditional wireless networks. Here’s a quick preview of what you can do using Wi-Fi Direct on the next generation of devices


 Wi-Fi Direct™: Connect with the possibilities

Wi-Fi Direct certification: an important milestone for Ensigma

We have recently announced that our Ensigma UCCP IP Reference Platform has achieved Wi-Fi Direct certification. This means that, on top of the already rich choice of 802.11 a/b/g/n with MIMO smart antenna technology and Bluetooth v3.0 connectivity options, our partners will now be able to significantly increase data throughput, sensitivity and other key performance metrics while also keeping low power and reduced latency as our key features.

The new Wi-Fi Direct devices which will include the Ensigma UCCP IP will have access to a myriad of applications without having to connect to a specific network. Furthermore, due to a new technology known as ‘Soft AP’ , micro-hotspots can be created that can act as gateways to the internet by directing network traffic similarly to routers and other access points. Security is also very well defined, by bundling WPA2 as a mandatory option, which leaves little room for unauthorised connections from outside agents. And with speeds of up to 300Mbps and ranges similar to what we currently see in our home wireless networks, Wi-Fi Direct will enable virtually unrestricted communication within the home or inside your car.

To add on top of that, the standard is inherently intelligent as it is able to distinguish between types of devices. If you want to print something, it will only detect printers; if you want to display an image, it will list gadgets that are able to do that. This should be done beforehand to avoid the hassle of connecting to something that cannot help you achieve what you set out to do.

This certification is an important milestone in our journey to transform the concept of a truly connected home into a reality for all consumers, who are more and more embracing an “on the go” lifestyle where speed, convenience and security are all important factors of their day to day activities.

For more information and other exciting announcements, follow us at @ImaginationPR and keep coming back to our blog!

About the author: Alex Voica

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Before deciding to pursue his dream of working in technology marketing, Alexandru held various engineering roles at leading semiconductor companies in Europe. His background also includes research in computer graphics and VR at the School of Advanced Studies Sant'Anna in Pisa. You can follow him on Twitter @alexvoica.

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