Panasonic’s Interactive Light ID Solutions Coming to Stores or Public Places Near You by March 2016: Require an App-installed Smartphone

This is an update to the previous blog, Panasonic is Developing “Light ID solution”: The High-speed Visible Light Communication Technology Via App-Installed Smartphone’s Image Sensor (Camera).

The following video presents Smartphone Optical Data Communication Technology – Light ID Technology:

Visible light ID technology concept: Image by Panasonic

Visible light ID technology concept: Image by Panasonic

Panasonic has developed technology for using an LED as the light source so that smartphones can read optical ID (identifier) signals containing various kinds of information.

  • Panasonic showcased Visible Light ID (identifier) Technology which only requires an app-installed smartphone at CES2015.

On the LED side, technology for communicating information through LED flashing at high speed has been utilized before. However, to make such information readable, the system used fluctuations in brightness that could be seen by the human eye.

But the technology we’ve developed now can vary the LED’s brightness at such high frequency, the flashing or fluctuation, isn’t visible to the human eye. The feature of this technology is on the smartphone side; it makes the signal readable by an ordinary smartphone.

Panasonic made the following technological improvement with accompanying benefits for consumers and tourists:

  • This new technology is hundreds of times faster than previous systems since it can send and receive optical ID signals several kilobits per second.
  • It could be used to supplement explanations of goods in stores, and as a solution obtaining information from science using LEDs as a light source.

As other applications, this technology could capture more detail information or receive multilingual explantions from digital signage.

The device that sends the signals with this technology can be in, for example a store or public place. Meanwhile, the person receiving the information can be a consumer or passerby. Unless that person can use their regular smartphone, such a system is meaningless; that was the basic idea behind our development of this technology.

Going forward, we think this should not only involve Panasonic, but also alliances with manufacturers that can put the technology into many forms, as well as IT system integrators, and businesses that can provide services using the technology.

Yoshihito Kawai, General Manager Business Development Group Panasonic Systems Networks Co., Ltd.

Panasonic intends to release products that transmit optical ID signals by March 2016, and plans to develop this business full-scale from fiscal 2016.