USB wireless data transfer

I was contemplating recently on the idea of making a wireless USB communication system akin to irDA but with a laser for a greater range. Basically just channeling the bit data trough a laser instead trough the cable.

From what i've read on the USB port...it's not that easy. USB 2.0 has a 12MHz operating speed on high speed. Low speed is around 1.5 MHz, but anything beyond a mouse or keyboard needs faster speeds. Getting a laser diode to work at those speeds???

Next...USB needs clock sync with the device connected. This is a deal breaker as well.

Furthermore...usb uses a mechanism to detect the speed of the bus, which requires changing the polarity of the data lines (as well as i believe the voltage...not sure on this one). That alone would require a separate protocol that interprets the signals on one end and transmits to the other. Screwing up the clock along the way.

To conclude...this is far....FAR, from a weekend project.

What are your thoughts?

You are correct, these devices are very hard to build. It used to be possible to buy commercial wireless USB extenders, but they were expensive, several $100s each and now its very hard to even find any for sale. The USB protocol specs are very tight, especially the timing limits, and its very hard to maintain over a wireless network.

You can sort of achieve the same result with a Wired USB to Ethernet converter, which you then plug into a wireless bridge. The downside is that many USB devices simply wont work over the link. Slow devices usually will, like keyboards and Mice, and some cheap Webcams, but anything that needs speed wont.

It seems so yes. Any more advanced device simply just wouldn't work.

Thanks for your thoughts.