Wi-Fi Direct: everything you need to know about new technology

In the near future Wi-Fi Direct, known first as a Wi-Fi Peer-to-Peer, will be one of the main ways to transfer data between wireless devices. The fact that a Wi-Fi Direct and how this technology can be learned from this material.

Wi-Fi Direct

Wi-Fi Direct: Wi-Fi router minus

Wi-Fi Direct – a new standard for wireless data transmission, which allows devices to communicate with each other directly without an intermediary in the form of a router.

Now when you connect a wireless printer to your computer or phone to a laptop to do it directly, it is usually impossible. This requires one more element in the form of connecting the router.

Wi-Fi Direct is designed to remove this restriction and to allow direct connection of devices.

Wi-Fi Direct: replace Bluetooth

Will the Wi-Fi Direct completely replace Bluetooth, say now with 100% certainty is difficult, but all the prerequisites for this are. The new derivative of the Wi-Fi as the transfer rate and the radius of coverage, and with the protection of data and ease of connectivity, the situation is much better than Bluetooth.

Getting rid of excess wireless interface of mobile devices will be on hand both producers and users: the device will be slightly smaller, lighter, cheaper and easier to manufacture, and users instead of the two interfaces will only monitor a single switch.

New Wi-Fi Direct technology can be integrated into almost any device, including those that traditionally operate on Bluetooth (wireless keyboard, mouse, headset). To increase the autonomy specifically for Wi-Fi Direct has been developed and new power-saving modes.

Specifications remain unchanged

At the hardware level, Wi-Fi Direct chips will differ little from conventional Wi-Fi modules. From this it follows that the technical characteristics of Wi-Fi Direct will be essentially the same as the current Wi-Fi networks. The new devices will even be backwards compatible with most existing Wi-Fi devices (regardless of the specific version of the 802.11 a / b / g / n).

Most Wi-Fi Direct chip must operate at a frequency of 2.4 GHz and, therefore, they will easily work with earlier versions of 802.11 (up to version n, except for 802.11a), and in some cases will be compatible with 802.11n.

Part of the Wi-Fi Direct modules will operate at 5 GHz and, therefore, able to connect to 802.11a and n networks. As you can guess by now, the available information, most of the chips will support both frequency bands (2.4 and 5 GHz).

Certified device Wi-Fi Direct will be able to maintain the same data rate as regular Wi-Fi chips, which is about 250 MB / s. Apparently, we are talking about chips built on 802.11n, and as soon as the first Wi-Fi Direct device to 802.11ac, the rate will increase by several times.

The maximum speed will depend on the transmission medium, the number of connected devices and their specific characteristics.

Under ideal conditions, as well as the use of conventional Wi-Fi, the new devices will be able to communicate with each other at a distance of 200 meters.

Wi-Fi Direct is not necessarily the union of “one on one”

The fact that Wi-Fi Direct will most often be used to interconnect two devices does not mean that these opportunities will be limited to the standard. As part of the new technology will create a whole group of interconnected devices (Wi-Fi Direct Group).

Most often, such a configuration group, apparently, will be used for multiplayer games. Players in this case do not require Internet access, mobile or any other cover. Being literally in the wilderness, they will be able to create a small wireless network, if their devices are within range of each other.

However, not all participants in the network must support Wi-Fi Direct. A single Wi-Fi Direct chip which will take on the role of coordinator of the traffic between devices with conventional Wi-Fi modules on the board.

It should be noted that in some cases the creation of groups is impossible, as some devices are initially created only for the compounds of the type “one on one.” This is consistent with the specifications of the standard, which can connect to multiple devices is optional.

Exactly how much equipment can be combined into a group or connect to one device, depending on specific conditions. Typically, this number is slightly lower than in the case of the usual point of access.

It is worth adding that, despite the affinity Wi-Fi and Wi-Fi Direct, it’s still a little bit different technologies, which once again confirmed by the following fact. Certified devices (out of context it seems that the majority) can connect to either the Wi-Fi Direct groups, or to the usual Wi-Fi access points, and only some of them will be able to do both simultaneously. For example, a laptop can be connected via a router to the Internet and at the same time to enter the Wi-Fi Direct Group, for distribution to other participants of this online group.

Connect as easy as saying “yes”

To connect to Wi-Fi Direct devices will be based on Wi-Fi Protected Setup, and, as a rule, would be to press a single button.

If two users want to connect their devices to transfer files, then one of them only need to send the invitation by selecting a different device from the list, and the second – to confirm the connection.

The composition of Wi-Fi Direct has two useful features: Wi-Fi Direct Device Discovery and Service Discovery. Thus, the device can not only find each other without further action by the user, but just learning about available opportunities (services).

For example, if a user has found a few devices available and wants to send a photo, the Service Discovery sift all unnecessary devices (e.g., audio) and leave only compatible peripherals (photo frames, televisions, and other smart phones, etc.).

All this happens before the connection, so that the user does not have to go through multiple devices one by one to find suitable opportunities.

Protocols such as UPnP and Bonjour also provide similar mechanisms for the detection of other devices, however, were incompatible with each other and have remained a little common. At the same time, Wi-Fi Direct has become the new standard for a single search, connectivity and information transfer.

Who in the main group?

If the Wi-Fi Direct Group will present a number of devices, the decision about who to give the focal point depends on several factors. For example, from the stand-alone (preference will be given a laptop that runs on the network, not smartphone), the number of connections that can handle the device, the number of services, from processing power.

In principle, mainly in the group is open to any certified device, but more powerful and advanced (laptops, smartphones, handheld console) will always take precedence over the periphery of such as printers, digital cameras, etc.

The degree of access

The amount of information available for viewing on other Wi-Fi Direct device will depend on its purpose.

If we consider the connection of two phones, then, in principle, possible that a particular program will provide access to all or most of the information, but usually it will take only a certain, small number of tasks. For example multiplayer games will only connect to each other a few players, software for video or photo will provide access only to those media files, but will hide the file system on the device.

Wi-Fi Direct business

Wi-Fi Direct is primarily aimed at normal users, but given the fact that the devices that can take advantage of new technology, widely used in offices, over time, this standard will become popular and at work. For example, to transmit video, images, and presentations from the phone to a projector or print files to the printer.


To ensure the safety of all data sent over Wi-Fi Direct, will be encrypted using the WPA2 – a reliable method that is well proven in the classical Wi-Fi.

Moreover, all devices that support dual connection (to the usual Wi-Fi devices and Wi-Fi Direct Group), will work with the data separately, providing additional security.

In the case where multiple devices from a Wi-Fi Direct Group will be to access the Internet through an intermediary that is connected to an unsecured or secured by a weaker encryption access point, the exchange of data between Wi-Fi Direct devices will still be using WPA2, despite the fact that the transfer station until the information is less protected by reaching out.

Wi-Fi Direct replaces conventional Wi-Fi?

Although Wi-Fi Direct and can in some cases to replace the access point, completely replace conventional Wi-Fi it will not work, because these technologies were created for two different tasks.

Classic Wi-Fi is primarily intended for Internet access and communication devices, stationary, while the Wi-Fi Direct will be used primarily for combining two or more devices in any random place where there are no external connection points.

Access points in many cases are needed for the reason that, as a rule, they support additional features such as connection to the Network for Ethernet-port, the availability of hardware firewalls, advanced network management features, etc.


The first Wi-Fi Direct device appeared in 2010, but really about the expansion of new technology can only speak after the Android 4.0.

In principle, only one OS is not enough. Android 4.0 can be placed even on some older devices, but support for Wi-Fi Direct them to this magically appears. On the other hand, there are opposite examples.

With the help of special improvements from the developer phone, Wi-Fi Direct can be implemented on Android 2.3. However, this situation is uncommon, and given the age of the OS, wait for a large number of Gingerbread smartphones with Wi-Fi Direct is not worth it.

As a specialized Wi-Fi Direct periphery does not exist yet, now this technology is mainly used to transfer files between the Android-smartphone. To do this you need to activate Wi-Fi Direct phone in the settings, select a file or any other data and use the Share or Send, where in addition to conventional methods of transmission will be present and Wi-Fi Direct.

Programs to work with Wi-Fi Direct to Google Play are still very little, or rather, only one, and it appeared on the eve of this writing. The utility is called WiFi Shoot! and is designed to transfer photos and video between devices. Send to other file types with it until it is impossible.

The peculiar version of Wi-Fi Direct for some time, and is used in devices from Apple. Technology AirDrop though not compatible with Wi-Fi Direct, but was represented by Apple as its analogue in conjunction with the release of OS X Lion July 1, 2011.

AirDrop is intended for the direct transfer of files over Wi-Fi, without first setting up and connecting to the classic wireless Wi-Fi network. The technology is supported on most PCs and laptops of the company, issued in 2008.

One of the first IT-companies are not willing in the near future to use the Wi-Fi Direct, is General Motors. The company plans to build detectors Wi-Fi Direct devices in cars, in the case of a dangerous approach to file a warning signal (for example, unwary cyclist in the neighboring lane) or automatically reduce the speed. However, the specific behaviors of the program remain open.

According to the company In-Stat, the expansion of Wi-Fi Direct will be completed in 2014, when nearly all computers and portable devices will support the new technology. This was all about Wi-Fi Direct its features and specs, this was all about which you should know about it.

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