Qualcomm says it plans to show off its latest advancement in peer-to-peer wireless technology at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona next week, with a technology called FlashLinq.
FlashLinq, says Qualcomm, enables devices to discover each other automatically and continuously, which means they can communicate with each other and share information on a peer-to-peer basis by effectively creating a “neighborhood-area network.”
The firm says its technology will even allow information to be shared at broadband speeds without the need for intermediary infrastructure, allowing mobile users to rely on physical proximity alone.
While this may sound like an operator’s worst nightmare, Qualcomm believes FlashLinq will actually complement traditional cellular-based services and may find uses for new types of applications including gaming.
Ed Knapp, senior vice president of business development and engineering for Qualcomm says FlashLinq’s direct discovery and distributed communications “allows operators to naturally extend their cellular networks.”
Knapp adds that the technology may also be useful in terms of offering services like direct local advertising, geo-social networking and machine-to-machine communications.
In terms of what’s under the hood, Qualcomm explains that FlashLinq is a synchronous TDD OFDMA technology operating on dedicated licensed spectrum and is distinguished by its high discovery range (up to a kilometer), discovery capacity (thousands of nearby devices) and distributed interference management.
The first trial rollout of the technology is set to take place in South Korea, with partner SK Telecom which plans to explore the technology’s potential commercial uses.