Machine 2 Machine Communications: RFOS Enables Last 100 Feet
The RFOS Bandwidth Difference
As Venture constituents become more familiar with the capabilities of our RFOS wireless solution, they often ask about the relationship between RFOS and WiFi. In summary, RFOS is neither superior to nor inferior to WiFi, it simply serves a different purpose, largely involving the “last 100 feet” of a wireless connectivity solution. Often, both technologies can serve complimentary purposes as part of the same solution.
RFOS can enable a door to door relay back to the front desk to send a message to enable a lock to respond to a particular key card.
Some key points of differentiation include the following:
WiFi is perfect for handling massive reams of data, culling and combining massive databases of information. RFOS provides the capillaries to these data arteries. These are the low-power, inexpensive, widely strewn sensors that collect the data points that fuel large database. WiFi does not offer the long battery life and low cost inherent in RFOS.
RFOS can provide thousands of bits per second hand is often used as a “last 100 feet” solution. RFOS does not do the heavy lifting of comparing this volume of data, rather it helps machines and humans “see” that pivotal data, often that one data point, that is right in front of you. It sees that one number that is required to spur an action. It is usually used in situations where it is much easier to leverage machine to machine communications versus having humans sitting there waiting for a tank to overflow, for example, and take actions against it.
To put it simply, RFOS reports the current state of some type of sensing for lower bandwidth applications. It also allows for tremendously long battery life and range, often 100 feet away from a transmitter. One practical example could include managing the automatic opening or closing of window shades based on room temperature.
The RFOS Relay
Another RFOS capability is its ability to mesh, or forward data along from point to point over long distances. For example, consider all of the doors in a hotel. RFOS can enable a door to door relay back to the front desk to send a message to enable a lock to respond to a particular key card. But it doesn’t need to have strong enough batteries to go half a mile. This lends itself to another RFOS feature, long battery life. Extremely small batteries can be built into each lock, and can hold a charge for long periods of time. The lock can even be powered by the action of opening the door…energy harvesting.