SAN FRANCISCO – Qualcomm’s LTE Direct proximal discovery service is expected to become commercially available in 2016.
Speaking Tuesday at the Open Mobile Summit, Mahesh Makhijani, senior director for Qualcomm Research, fit the technology in with Release 12 and said its currently undergoing trials with Deutsche Telekom and KT. He said Qualcomm has LTE Direct partnerships in place with Yahoo, Control Group, R/GA, the Sacramento Kings and Radius Networks, in addition to the Facebook partnership Qualcomm announced in September.
Makhijani wants us to think of LTE Direct as a “digital 6th sense” for mobile devices. The device-to-device technology works a little like a beacon on a phone. It puts out two basic messages, called expressions.
Public expressions are app agnostic and any proximal device can decode them. Makhijani said they’re suited for advertising. Private expressions are app specific and only proximal devices with a “key” can decode them.
Makhijani said relevance and filtering occurs at the modem layer and that communication is accomplished via traditional LTE or Wi-Fi—meaning the technology only works under network coverage.
Qualcomm places LTE Direct above Bluetooth LE in a couple of areas. The company says LTE Direct has 10x the range of BLE, which reaches out approximately 50 meters.
The company also touts the scalability of the technology, which allows for always-on discoverability and promises not to drain device batteries just because the number of users increases. Makhijani also stressed that LTE Direct is a horizontal platform that works across applications.
Filed Under: Infrastructure