What Is Wi-Fi Direct?


Quick Answer

Wi-Fi Direct is a wireless technology that allows supported devices to connect directly through Wi-Fi and print documents, share files and synchronize. Personal computers, printers, mobile phones and cameras that bear the Wi-Fi Direct certification can connect directly to each other or to a group of devices without joining a network to share applications or transfer content.

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Full Answer

Wi-Fi Direct uses the same technology that Wi-Fi-enabled devices use to connect to wireless routers. In addition to the ad-hoc networking feature available in conventional Wi-Fi devices, Wi-Fi Direct includes easy setup and discovery features. Wi-Fi Direct devices can connect to each other at the push of a button, by entering a personal identification number, or by tapping two devices with Near Field Communication together. Wi-Fi Direct devices do not need an Internet connection or an access point to connect to each other.

Wi-Fi Direct uses a device and service discovery protocol that gives supported devices a way to discover nearby devices and services before connecting. Through this protocol, a Wi-Fi Direct device can view devices that it can connect to in its vicinity, sort out printing devices and request to make a connection. Wi-Fi Direct connections use WPA2 encryption, which is a secure way of encrypting wireless signals.

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