The way people talk about wireless power is evolving. No doubt you’re hearing phrases like power over air, air-harvested power, power at a distance, battery-less power, and RF-based power. The concept is the same: small devices and IoT sensors that need low power over time should be able to receive power at a distance, over the air, without the need for contact with a charging surface or cable.
At Ossia, we’re in the middle of the discussion, with the ongoing enhancement of our patented, award-winning technology, Cota® Real Wireless Power, and the ongoing talks with different players in the wireless power ecosystem. (https://www.ossia.com/partners/)
What’s in the cards for wireless power in the near and not-so-distant future? Here are five predictions, based on our experience, research, and conversations in the space.
5 Wireless Power Predictions from Ossia
1. Devices Will Charge Themselves Automatically, Without Wires
Brand loyalists will tell you, they have several small devices of the same brand in their home or office. Whether it be Samsung or Apple, Fitbit or Garmin, Google or Amazon, Arlo or Ring, the small personal and office devices tend to work together on similar charging or battery systems.
Now imagine the base station for your Arlo security system, as an example, doubling as a wireless power transmitter for all your Arlo cameras, which would have wireless battery systems built in. With a current battery-operated system, you may get an alert that your batteries are tired while you’re 3,000 miles away. With a wireless system, you’d never feel that panic of losing sight.
This isn’t just imagination at work. Consider Apple’s recent patent describes a future iMac doubling as a wireless transmitter that can recharge all of Apple's Magic accessories.
2. Wireless Power Will Become a Sustainable Building Standard
Businesses are already opting for LEED certified buildings, charging stations for electric cars, reusable bags, paper straws, and robust recycling programs. Becoming more sustainable isn’t only good for the planet, it helps attract and retain more respectful, well-educated employees.
Wireless power is the next natural step for sustainable operations. Wireless power systems:
- Lower building costs (less wiring installation needed)
- Decrease safety hazards (no extension cords to trip over or start fires)
- Decrease our dependence on disposable batteries and the costs associated with managing them
- Increase employee up-time (no downtime from charging)
- Increase connectivity and innovation opportunities
The enterprise market will likely be a first-mover in the wireless charging space as brands clamor to ‘own’ the enterprise space. As the focus for the consumer space has started in the home and saturated the market prematurely, the enterprise space is heating up. There are so many opportunities for wireless power in the enterprise and smart building space for infrastructure players, incumbent brands and device manufactures to establish themselves in the race for the completely ‘un-wired world’.
Next time you see your COO, ask about how wireless power could make your building and operations more sustainable. We bet you’ll both have even more ideas.
3. Wireless Power Will Become a Necessary Companion to 5G and IoT
We’re not the only ones raising the flag about how the continued rapid growth of the Internet of everything, which will grow even faster with 5G, needs an alternative power source. Any manufacturer or designer of interconnected things knows that our current system of powering sensors with batteries just isn’t physically sustainable over time. There are and will be too many of them, too few of us, and needing to access batteries with a human hand limits design innovation.
The obvious answer is to go batteryless. Pulling power from the air, via a wireless power technology system, solves the battery problem instantly.
4. Wireless Power Will Be Integral to Sophisticated Security Systems
Sophisticated security systems currently need at least two sources of power: a primary source and a backup in case the first one goes out. For our modern-day buildings, that currently means wiring every lock, entry pad, camera, and motion sensor in the building, while installing a battery backup system. This ensures everything is operational and communicating with each other and your team. But batteries fail too, and usually at the most inopportune time: the middle of the night or a holiday.
Leveraging wireless power and wirelessly powered sensors as part of these systems makes a whole lot of sense. For one, it may decrease complex wiring schematic needs. And two, it may make buildings, people, and things a whole lot safer.
5. Wireless Power Will Create a New Job Market That Spans Strategy, Installation, Customization, Sales, Optimization, and Marketing
If you are considering the next wave of highly desired employees (and careers), look to wireless power. People who have wireless power knowledge and experience are the ones who will be able to leverage the tool to your best advantage across many different verticals.
Wireless power on its own is a fascinating science, but it’s those who have the imagination and forethought to implement it in business- and product-revolutionizing ways who will change the world and how we live in it.
We are about to live in a world where there will truly be no more wires. Here’s to cutting the cord forever.
Learn more about how Cota is revolutionizing how small devices receive power.
Do you have a wireless power prediction … or wishlist? We’d love to hear it. Contact us.