Discover the world nearby
Our world is bigger and more personalized than ever, with social media usage diversifying and expanding to include localized experiences based on proximity. Proximity has become a critical element of today’s mobile connected experiences, and the market for proximity-based applications is expected to grow significantly in 2015 and beyond. These applications are enriching the mobile experience, and proximity-centric apps are changing the mobile landscape. Retailers, venues, and municipalities, and many others are leveraging proximity to drive revenue and value.
Wi-Fi® is evolving alongside proximity-based social networking
Wi Fi CERTIFIED Wi-Fi Aware™ is a new Wi-Fi Alliance certification program that extends Wi-Fi’s capabilities with a real-time and energy-efficient discovery mechanism that provides an immediate on-ramp to rich here-and-now experiences. Wi-Fi Aware’s ability to continuously discover other devices and services within Wi-Fi range before making a connection brings proximity-based service discovery to Wi-Fi CERTIFIED devices. Wi-Fi Aware will make it easy to find information and services available in an area that match preferences set by the user – and is optimized to work well even in crowded environments. Wi-Fi Aware will be a key enabler of a personalized social, local, and mobile experience, enabling users to find video gaming opponents, share media content, and access localized information all before establishing a connection.
Wi-Fi Aware means more powerful proximity experiences
- Provides continuous device-to-device discovery, even without a GPS, cellular or hotspot connection
- The technology works well in crowded environments and indoors – by design
- Wi-Fi CERTIFIED means it operates in typical Wi-Fi range across numerous device brands
- Allows bidirectional sharing of small pieces of information, e.g. location data, sensor readings,
and services in proximity
- Applications easily transition to a Wi-Fi connection to use high bandwidth
- Wi-Fi Aware is app-centric, and users can control privacy and opt-in or out of identity disclosure
- Leverages the spontaneous nature of user proximity to enable innovative applications
Certification for Wi-Fi Aware is now available.
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- What is Wi-Fi Aware?
Wi-Fi Aware delivers always-on, real-time discovery of what is available nearby, and provides an on-ramp to the kinds of rich here-and-now experiences people want. It establishes a common “heartbeat” that aligns communication windows to enable efficient, continuous discovery of devices and services. When a device discovers an interesting service, the device can initiate a high-performance Wi-Fi connection.
- How does Wi-Fi Aware improve upon existing proximity technologies?
Wi-Fi Aware improves on existing proximity offerings by delivering a truly here-and-now contextual awareness solution that works well indoors and in dense environments, without requiring a cellular, Wi-Fi, or GPS connection. The technology provides an easy onramp for a high-performance Wi-Fi connection and works at typical Wi-Fi range.
- How will users experience Wi-Fi Aware?
Wi-Fi Aware-enabled experiences will be application-driven, and users will be able to control privacy settings and opt-in to desired notifications. Users can configure an application to offer and/or seek services on nearby devices, exchanging basic information without making a connection to that device.
- How does Wi-Fi Aware enable rich proximity-based experiences?
When an interesting experience is found, the application can initiate a high-performance Wi-Fi connection, using Wi-Fi Direct or infrastructure Wi-Fi, to do things like sharing photos or playing a multiplayer game.
- What is Wi-Fi Aware’s range?
Wi-Fi Aware operates at typical Wi-Fi range.
- What is the Wi-Fi Alliance specification underlying Wi-Fi Aware?
Wi-Fi Aware is a certification program based on the Wi-Fi Alliance Neighbor Awareness Networking specification.
- Will Wi-Fi Aware drain the battery on my mobile device?
Wi-Fi Aware was designed to be very power efficient. Wi-Fi Aware devices establish clusters with a common “heartbeat” to exchange small messages about services available nearby. Continuous discovery can occur without putting undue burden on the battery of a mobile device.
- On what frequency bands does Wi-Fi Aware operate?
Wi-Fi Aware operates in 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz.
- Can my device be updated to support Wi-Fi Aware?
Many devices are capable of receiving updates to support Wi-Fi Aware. Whether a device can receive software updates to add the new functionality or not comes down to individual device vendor implementation.
- What is the relationship between Wi-Fi Aware and Wi-Fi Direct?
Wi-Fi Aware provides an efficient mechanism for always-on service discovery, whereas Wi-Fi Direct provides data connectivity among groups of devices. The technologies are complementary. Once an interesting service is discovered, a device can initiate a high-performance connection using Wi-Fi Direct for data transfer related to the service, e.g. sharing photos or playing a multiplayer game.