Apple Looks to Expand MFi Accessories
At the recent MFi Technology Summit (Made for iPhone/iPad/iPod) in Shenzen, China, Apple announced a new standard for communicating between Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and AirPlay on iOS devices. Speaking to a crowd of 2,000 MFi developers, Apple is looking to expand the availability of MFI accessories, which have not kept track with the growth of iOS devices.
Apple seems to have a plan to expand AirPlay wireless devices market to be 7 times larger by promoting iPod Accessory Protocol (IAP) via Bluetooth implemented in iOS 5. AirPlay wireless devices has only 2% of MFI program licensed yet.
The announced standards, Bluetooth 4.0 and a certification chip, are already in place in the iPhone 4S. Bluetooth 4.0 works well with battery-powered devices as it uses little energy. It is believed that this could potentially expand the AirPlay market by sevenfold using the iPod Accessory Protocol (IAP) that is part of iOS 5. Applications in health care and gaming are seen as potential growth areas.