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How Wi-Fi Direct Benefits Multimedia-Centric Devices

The first wireless applications likely to adopt Wi-Fi Direct (peer-to-peer connectivity) include mobile PCs, digital televisions (DTVs), and mobile phones.

These devices have something in common: they're the respective centers of the PC,consumer electronics (CE), mobile device clusters, and they ship in the hundreds of millions of devices annually.

Wireless display of images and video is a major aim of Wi-Fi Direct, so the main display in most homes will be a key target. According to the latest market study by In-Stat, in 2015 nearly 80 million DTVs will be Wi-Fi Direct-enabled.

"One significant question surrounding to Wi-Fi Direct is will it ultimately help to increase the penetration of Wi-Fi? The answer is, marginally if at all," says Brian O'Rourke, Research Director at In-Stat.

Wi-Fi already has increasing penetration rates throughout PCs, PC peripherals, CE devices, and mobile phones. Moreover, the upside for new applications within smartphones and multimedia tablets is significant.

That said, as a peer-to-peer networking technology, Wi-Fi Direct may be the most help in the CE market -- where Wi-Fi's impact has been more modest than in the PC world.

It is in the CE market -- particularly portable multimedia-centric devices -- where Wi-Fi Direct may have the most benefit and deliver the greatest added value.

In-Stat's latest market study findings include:

- Mobile PCs will adopt Wi-Fi Direct more quickly than any other application.

- Every PC, CE device and mobile phone that ships in 2014 with Wi-Fi silicon will be Wi-Fi Direct-enabled.

- Wi-Fi Direct-enabled device shipments will reach 173 million in 2011.

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