Battery Life Beware: We Have Conquered The Air!


The year 2000 brought us a plethora of technological leaps at exponential rates. Advances didn’t just jump a step, nor double in speed and size, they multiplied by 3, 4 and even 10 times in some cases. For the comic book fans out there, Dick Tracey’s two way wrist TV first delighted our fantasies in 1964. It was a possibility only the imagination could dream up. 51 years later we have the Apple Watch; so much for the impossible…

Accompanying these marvels of the past’s future is a need for power. A portable, sustainable power supply is absolutely necessary to keep things rolling. A far cry from the original Voltaic Pile invented in 1800, the modern day battery has advanced hand-in-hand with the devices we hold dear. Still, we find ourselves wanting… needing more and more. Battery life is a struggle, whether you use your devices for work or for play. It’s also one of the bigger selling points, and seemingly, a struggle within the landscape of small electronics like smart phones and tablets. Yes, you have the ability to recharge via a cord connected to a wall outlet but would it not be convenient to just let the recharging take place in your pocket?

Since the actual manufacturers of these devices seem to be doing little, if anything, to improve power issues, companies like Nikola Labs and Energous are stepping up with some exciting breakthroughs in wireless charging.

nikola labs iphone case3Nikola Labs has come up with a protective case for the iPhone 6 (along with another gadget or two to start) that will scavenge the wasted energy put out by your own phone to extend its battery life by a lovely 30%.

How is this possible? Here’s the short version: your device sends out an RF signal when it’s looking to connect to a network; whether it be WiFi, 3G, 4G or other. Most of this energy just goes out there into never-never land and dissipates. The Nikola Labs case contains a special antenna that grabs onto this wasted energy, recycles it and converts it into the correct DC voltage to help recharge your device. Thank you again, Nikola Tesla for your experiments on “pulling electricity from thin air.”

Energous has approached the issue from a slightly different angle:

Although they are using the same basic idea, their system is a bit more dedicated as opposed to ambient. Energous has created a power transmitting “router” called, WattUp. This little beauty actually transmits a specific radio frequency, similar to a WiFi router, to your pre-programmed device for safe, wireless charging energy at a distance of up to 15ft from the transmitter. It also maintains charging while the receiver is in motion or in use as long as the device stays within that 15 foot range. They even boast that up to 12 devices can be managed by the system simultaneously. Now, you can have your own wireless network for data and for power. You may not ever have to leave your residence again… could this be a bad thing? (Chuckle, chuckle.)



Product Overview. (2015, May). Retrieved 10 July 2015
Wallace, B., & Interactive, W

Citations, Quotes & Annotations

Product Overview. (2015, May). Retrieved 10 July 2015
(‘Product Overview’, 2015)
Wallace, B., & Interactive, W. (2015, May 1). Retrieved 10 July 2015
(Wallace & Interactive, 2015)


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