The visible light communication market was valued at USD 24.01 billion in 2020, and it is expected to reach a value of USD 1582.66 billion by 2026 at a CAGR of 101% over the forecast period (2021 - 2026). This technology will eliminate the need for other wireless technologies, such as Infrared (IR), Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi which emit Electromagnetic interference (EMI) and RF waves that are harmful to both instruments/devices and humans. However, the market is currently in the emerging phase, and prototypes are being developed.
- The primary driver behind the growth of the high-speed VLC is the rapidly growing presence of LEDs in practically every signaling or illumination entity. By as early as 2020, the majority of new energy-efficient lighting installations are expected to be LED-based. Consequently, these bulbs can transmit at high speeds that were not possible with conventional light bulb technologies such as fluorescent and incandescent lamps. According to research, the global LED penetration in the lighting market is estimated to reach 61% in 2020.
- Another important driver for VLC systems comes from the plethora of wireless applications. According to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), a spectrum deficit (i.e., lack of usable radio frequencies for new wireless applications) is expected due to exponential growth in demand for wireless transmission capacity.
- The problem of congestion of the radio spectrum utilized by Wi-Fi and cellular radio systems is further facilitating investments for the development of the market for VLC. Technology innovations addressing challenges, such as line of sight (LOS) requirements, reliability and network coverage issues, and complexities in system setup, would further attract end-user interest towards the adoption of VLC technology.
- However, a lack of awareness about this technology may hamper the growth of the visible light communication market. Since the technology is still emerging, prototypes are being developed. Further advancements in optoelectronic devices/materials are expected to open up new opportunities for the application of this technology.
Key Market Trends
Automotive and Transportation Segment Expected to Witness a Significant Growth
- Traffic management is a broad segment facing numerous challenges, with increasing population and vehicles on the road. The amount of data transferred through Wi-Fi on the street is neither sufficient nor secure enough for effective management. Apart from aiding traffic management, a promising application for VLC is in vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure communication.
- Most car headlights and tail lights are being replaced with LEDs. VLC can transform these LEDs for car-to-car communication. This factor can improve anti-collision systems and facilitate the exchange of a range of information between vehicles.
- As traffic lights use LED lighting, it is an emerging opportunity in citywide traffic management systems, like pedestrian signals and traffic signals using VLC. For instance, street lights communicating with a pedestrian’s VLC-equipped smartphone can regulate vehicle traffic, allowing pedestrians to cross a street.
- VLC technology in traffic systems allows the drivers to use smart devices or car headlights to connect and generate information from traffic lighting systems. This information can also be transmitted to other cars using tail lights. Information, such as traffic updates, shortest estimated time of arrival to a specific location (considering traffic congestion), or even internet access can be communicated through the usage of this technology.
- However, drivers may use smart devices while driving, which may act as a challenge. The ideal way to overcome this challenge is to incorporate a visible communication system in the vehicle and use the vehicle’s headlights to send information. However, the efficiency of these intelligent traffic systems may be affected due to noise, which may impact the adoption rate of VLC systems.
North America to Account for the Largest Market Share
- North America is the most prominent market for VLC due to increasing investment in R&D in advanced technological solutions, such as artificial intelligence, sustainable energy projects, and big data analytics. The major wireless network providers in the region, such as Telus Corp, Rogers Communications Inc., and BCE Inc.’s Bell Mobility, are investing heavily in R&D activities in VLC, along with 5G technology to increase their market share among the wireless and internet service providers. The implementation of Li-Fi technology is expected to boost the US economy, aid in economic growth, and create job opportunities.
- The United States is the most prominent market for VLC technology, owing to increasing investments in R&D in advanced technological solutions, such as artificial intelligence, sustainable energy projects, and Big Data analytics. The United States is the first country to install 5G wireless networks, making the country the global test bed for LTE services and apps.
- The lighting industry is embracing new ground-breaking business opportunities through VLC, as data transmission governs all the major sectors in the United States, including the government sector. Further, government initiatives, such as “Gigabit Communities” that helps make the United States one of the high capacity and the super-fast ubiquitous broadband networks, enhance the adoption of VLC opportunities.
The visible light communication market is neither highly competitive nor has a limited number of players. It is an emerging market with newer technologies in the pipeline, further creating visible light communication technology potential.
- July 2021 - On Semiconductor announced new LED driver ICs NCL31000 and NCL31001, which simplifies solid-state lighting (SSL) product development with smart-lighting feature sets to provide connectivity. The LED driver ICs will support Internet of Things (IoT) applications that include visible light communications (VLC) and indoor positioning.
- May 2021 - Airbus Corporate Jets (ACJ) partnered with Latecoere Interconnection Systems, an electronic wiring interconnection system (EWIS) supplier. The partnership will develop the Light Fidelity (Li-Fi) in-flight entertainment (IFE) monitor, an aircraft manufacturer's first technology for next-generation communication systems.
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Table of Contents
1.2 Scope of the Study
4.2 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis
4.2.1 Threat of New Entrants
4.2.2 Bargaining Power of Suppliers
4.2.3 Bargaining Power of Buyers
4.2.4 Threat of Substitute Products
4.2.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry
4.3 Value Chain Analysis
4.4 Assessment of Impact of COVID-19 on the Industry
5.1.1 Increasing Competition from other Wireless Communication Technologies
5.1.2 High Demand for Building Smart City Infrastructure
5.2 Market Challenges
5.2.1 Threat from Government Policies and Lack of Awareness
6.1.1 Light Emitting Diodes
6.1.4 Software and Services
6.2 By Transmission Type
6.3 By Application
6.3.1 Consumer Electronics
6.3.2 Defense and Security
6.3.4 Public Infrastructure
6.3.5 Life Sciences
6.3.6 Other Applications
6.4 By Geography
6.4.1 North America
220.127.116.11 United States
18.104.22.168 United Kingdom
22.214.171.124 Rest of Europe
6.4.3 Asia Pacific
126.96.36.199 South Korea
188.8.131.52 Rest of Asia Pacific
6.4.4 Latin America
184.108.40.206 Rest of Latin America
6.4.5 Middle East and Africa
220.127.116.11 Saudi Arabia
18.104.22.168 Rest of Middle East and Africa
7.1.1 Koninklijke Philips NV
7.1.2 LVX System
7.1.3 Bytelight Inc. (A Acuity Brand’s Company)
7.1.4 Panasonic Corporation
7.1.5 Purelifi Ltd
7.1.7 Lucibel SA
7.1.8 Outstanding Technology Co. Ltd
7.1.9 Axrtek Company
7.1.10 Firefly Wireless Networks LLC
A selection of companies mentioned in this report includes:
- Koninklijke Philips NV
- LVX System
- Bytelight Inc. (A Acuity Brand’s Company)
- Panasonic Corporation
- Purelifi Ltd
- Lucibel SA
- Outstanding Technology Co. Ltd
- Axrtek Company
- Firefly Wireless Networks LLC