Why Samsung and Xiaomi are talking UWB, and more tech news you need to know today
Your tech news digest, by way of the DGiT Daily tech newsletter, for Monday, 12 October 2020.
1. UWB is ultra, it’s wideband, and Apple’s announcing it tomorrow?
Here’s a little preview of the future via Samsung, which said today in a blog post that says it expects UWB to be one of the “next big wireless technologies”.
- UWB, or ultra-wideband, looks like the next big thing as it allows for fast data transfer over longer ranges, with precision location services baked in.
- UWB chips are now present in several new smartphones, like the iPhone 11 series and the Samsung Galaxy Note 20 Ultra.
- And the reason is that the technology looks intensely useful. Better Bluetooth is a simple mostly right answer, but another example would be much better NFC, as well, given accuracies can be down to centimeters.
- So, what does it mean? Samsung’s examples of using UWB technology: finding your car in a parking lot, or unlocking your front door as you approach it.
- Yes, using Bluetooth and NFC could maybe work as well for these examples, but UWB is going to dramatically amplify and simplify the possibilities.
Coincidentally, Xiaomi has also posted its own take on UWB earlier today. (Probably, it’s not a coincidence at all — it’s very possible Apple is going to show off UWB applications tomorrow in its event, including the launch of AirTags, its take on Tile devices for keeping track of the location of things. So, here are Samsung and Xiaomi with the pre-emptive strike)
- Xiaomi’s video isn’t in English so forgive me for missing some of it, but what it does show is someone using a Xiaomi phone to control devices such as a smart light, smart display, fan, and smart TV, just by pointing it at the devices.