Wireless power, charging technology may unplug Apple's iPhone
Reply 21 of 25
April 8, 2008 3:14PM
Just think. One day you could set your laptop on a table in Starbucks and just your laptop sitting there could get power from the table plugged into the wall.
Reply 22 of 25
April 8, 2008 4:19PM
I think it would be great if this kind of tech could be used even for tethered devices. Just now, you have a single or double socket and if you run out, you have to add multiple extensions. What if instead of that design, you just had a large plate and plugs were simply flat and held on by magnets.
I think the same thing could be done for peripherals. People are forever complaining about the lack of display ports or USB ports. If there was a combined power + data plate where peripherals connected via magnets and data signals were separated in the same way that multiple signals down say a single ethernet or USB cable are separated, it would sort all sorts of issues.
No more fumbling about the back of an iMac, just stick it on the back plate somewhere. Need multiple displays on a Mini, just stick them on. Wireless power and data on everything is better but it'll only be practical when it's more efficient. So that instead of sending data+power in all directions, there's a way to broadcast a signal to find devices and then fire a laser-like beam directly to the device's vicinity and track it.
Reply 23 of 25
April 8, 2008 10:13PM
It's remarkable how an ignorant article can spawn such a bunch of ignorant replies -
when the article itself contains a pointer to the company's description of the technology
For the record: The comparison to inductive chargers for toothbrushes is not valid. That does, indeed, use a magnetic field, works only over very short distances, and is inefficient. The technology here uses resonant circuits and an electromagnetic field. It's a near-field technology - more similar to radio than to magnetic coupling. (Radio is a far-field technology, so that analogy isn't very close either.) There's a good writeup of all this stuff in Wikipedia.
A near-field transmission does not have a large magnetic component. The company's Q&A claims that they tested a floppy between a transmitter and a receiver sending 1000 watts between them and the floppy was unaffected.
Near-field power transmission can be quite efficient. eCoupled claims 98%. I have no way to judge if this is the case, but it seems possible. I couldn't find any claims about distances, but the near field extends out to a good part of the wavelength of the signal being used, which could be several feet.
As eCoupled implements the technology, they claim an embedded data channel good for 1.1 Mbps. Not world-beating, but plenty for many uses.
This is an old but long-neglected technology that's seen a recent re-emergence of interest. A group at MIT showed off some similar technology a couple of months back. (I think their unique addition to the argument was an algorithm to do detailed calculation and optimization of various parameters.)
I have nothing to do with eCoupled and can't say if their implementation is better than others - or even whether it really works. But they aren't claiming any magical properties, and what they
claiming looks well thought out. If you've tried it and found it wanting - go ahead and criticize. But being dismissive without the most basic understanding of what's possible, and what's being done ... that's just crap.
Reply 24 of 25
April 9, 2008 5:18AM
Didn't Apple already patent
something to this effect
? Didn't this site even
report on it
Reply 25 of 25
April 10, 2008 7:18AM
This technology is nowhere near being new. It has long been predicted that such technology will be adopted by apple, bearing in mind the technology barely weighs (or costs) anything.
I have wireless recharging technology inside my toothbrush, I just have to rest it on the platform.
Oh and netboy.. that's my favorite response in the thread hehe.