Wi-Fi Alliance announces new peer-to-peer spec

The Wi-Fi Alliance announced a new spec called Wi-Fi Direct that will allow smartphones, laptops and other electronics to connect to each other without using a traditional WiFi hotspot.

The new spec is supposed to be faster than existing ad-hoc modes for peer-to-peer connections and could be used in a number of scenarios, such as peer-to-peer gaming or wireless printing. The Wi-Fi Direct spec will also be able to connect with existing WiFi-certified devices for one-to-one connections. Security features such as WPA2 will also be included in the specification.

The alliance expects to begin certifying Wi-Fi Direct devices in 2010.

"Wi-Fi users worldwide will benefit from a single-technology solution to transfer content and share applications quickly and easily among devices, even when a Wi-Fi access point isn't available," said Edgar Figueroa, executive director of the Wi-Fi Alliance, in a statement. "The impact is that Wi-Fi will become even more pervasive and useful for consumers and across the enterprise."

Given the wireless overlap between Wi-Fi Direct and Bluetooth will the two technologies end up fighting for many of the same customers?

For more:
- see this InformationWeek article