Harvesting cellphone RF energy to boost battery life: Page 3 of 3

October 21, 2016 // By Nick Flaherty
A wireless charging startup is looking to boost battery life in mobile phones and tablets by harvesting the RF energy from their radio links. Nick Flaherty talks to Marc Chen, CTO of Radient Micro-Tech (Fremont, CA).

“Even if it in an external case it has to make use of the signals from the internal signal processor otherwise you could actually jam the signal – we could have rushed out with the external case but we didn’t as we know this has to be designed into the cellphone,” he said.

“We are working with potential partners such as RF wireless charger companies as many have been working on this for a number of years – our expertise is working within the cellphone and working with a partner we can get to market much faster.”

However, as a small company he is not a big fan of the standards groups that are dominated by the large industry players.

“Generally it’s not good to be part of a standard but as the technology is patented we are comfortable. Being part of a standard without patent protection is a problem as without patents the other partners can use the technology and it just becomes a price war. As we have patented technology we can offer a player in a consortium a competitive advantage,” he said.

With the need to design into cellphones and develop a wider ecosystem of wireless charging, the technology will not come to market quickly. “A recent IDC report analysed the wireless charger space and by 2020 over half will be truly wireless and not Qi based and that’s where we see our technology rolling out,” said Chen.



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