CES 2015: a true wireless charging system beams power to gadgets from 20 feet away

Energous WattUp image 001

At CES, Energous presented a true wireless charging system that beams power to devices through the air, from 20 feet away, Engadget reported.

They’re calling it WattUp and it uses a proprietary solution that got demoed at CES yesterday.

The technology is ready for seamless integration into a common residential setting, providing the ability to charge a multitude of devices free of any wired connection or charging pad.

It uses the same radio bands as a Wi-Fi router, but differs from the existing crop of wireless charging systems in that it delivers meaningful, usable power at a distance.

A WattUp transmitter detects authorized receiver devices via Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and only sends power when needed, and requested by those devices.

Once a contact with a receiver device has been established, a WhattUp router sends out focused RF signals on the same bands as WiFi which are then absorbed and converted into DC power by a chip embedded in the device.

“These transmitters can be built into household appliances, TVs, speakers and standalone energy routers,” explains Engadget. And therein lies the only problem with the solution: receiving devices have to have the necessary chip embedded.

Energous is currently looking to license its tech to device vendors.

Energous WattUp image 002

WattUp is controlled via an iPad app which intelligently determines which devices receive power, when and in what priority. If there are no authorized devices within range, the WattUp transmitter becomes idle and no power is wasted.

In future incarnations, the technology could automatically detect charge levels of authorized devices to beam power through the air as needed.

It’s pretty impressive when you think of it, especially given existing solution require that a device be put on a charging pad which must be connected to the power socket.

Not with the WhattUp, which lets you roam freely while your gadgets charge, a distinct advantage over charging pads. I’m keeping my fingers crossed they’ll successfully deploy this technology and that it’ll see widespread adoption soon enough.

[Engadget, Energous]