Would RF technology be replaced by FSO
(free space optical technology)??
Hi Vikki of India:
Your question is beyond me, but reminded me of an article I read recently about millimeter RF provider GigaBeam.
I hope this helps. Thanks. /criss
Cost and sensitivity to alignment/troubleshooting will prevent FSO from overtaking RF. And FSO is a point-to-point technology; you can't "connect" to it using wifi cards.
FSO is not a competitive technology to WiFi. It is very complementary, however, in the fact that ir provides an excellent means for backhaul and hot spot aggregation. With data rates available up to OC48 (2.5 gbps) and no RF interference to worry about, it makes the perfect add on to a large scale WiFi deployment (Think city wide or campus wide).
Here is an example:
FSO does have its own interference issues though. Fog, smoke, smog, and snow (anything with suspended particulate matter) are known to cause decreased throughput and sometimes loss of connectivity. Also, since this is typically done with lasers, there is the issue of not aligning them where anyone can get zapped by the beams, usually not an issue though since they're typically mounted on the tops of buildings.
If anyone has some extras ones of these they're not using, I know a few sharks that would love to have frickin' laser beams attached to their heads -- sure beats the ill-tempered, mutated sea bass I have now.
Sorry, couldn't resist the Austin Powers reference there. :D
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