Energous Gets FCC Certification for WattUp Wire-Free Charging Technology

Discussion in 'iOS Blog Discussion' started by MacRumors, Dec 27, 2017.

  1. MacRumors macrumors bot


    Apr 12, 2001

    Nearly three years after Energous debuted its wire-free "power-at-a-distance" charging system called WattUp, the Federal Communications Commission has now approved the technology. Specifically, the FCC certification is for the company's first-generation WattUp Mid Field transmitter, which powers up devices at a distance of up to three feet away (via Engadget).

    The news marks the first FCC certification ever for a wire-free charging system, which Energous said will open up "a tremendous opportunity for the electronics industry." The company mentioned that the WattUp Mid Field transmitter could be used in the future by "nearly any small electronic device," including smartphones, tablets, smart watches, earbuds, wireless keyboards and mice, smart speakers, and more.


    Next, Energous will demonstrate the WattUp technology at CES 2018 in January. CEO Stephen R. Rizzone mentioned that the system's ability to charge both wire-free and via a traditional mat system will give WattUp an edge on the market.
    WattUp is able to charge any battery-operated device using a technique that Energous likens to Wi-Fi, as long as the device has one of the company's receivers. A WattUp Power Router (a "transmitter") emits energy using a radio frequency signal delivered by miniature antenna arrays and custom control chips. Devices with a WattUp "receiver" (consisting of multiple miniature antennas) are then able to convert that RF signal into battery power.

    Following the debut of WattUp at CES 2015, speculation pointed towards Apple possibly working with Energous on implementing the receiver technology directly into future iPhones, or at least helping the company build a MFi certified WattUp iPhone accessory. Once rumors of wireless charging in the 2017 iPhone lineup began swirling, Apple and Energous were again tied together, but eventually Apple opted for inductive wireless charging on the iPhone 8 and iPhone X.

    Energous doesn't have any consumer-available products for purchase yet, but it's expected that the company will announce more news about its WattUp device at CES, which runs January 9 through 12 in Las Vegas.

    Article Link: Energous Gets FCC Certification for WattUp Wire-Free Charging Technology
  2. PickUrPoison macrumors 68020

    Sep 12, 2017
    Sunnyvale, CA
    It would be awesome to put that transmitter on the end of a 200 foot extension cord.

    I could tie it around my foot, then no matter where I went in my house or office, my phone would always be charging! (as long as I held my phone below my waist.)
  3. BvizioN macrumors 601


    Mar 16, 2012
    Manchester, UK
    This is the way wireless charging should be. Walking in your home, office, cafe bar, restaurant, station, airport. your device connects and charges. Eventually you feel no need to look at your devices battery level.
  4. b0nd18t macrumors 6502


    Apr 9, 2012
    I don’t know man. Going to be a while before I trust this type of technology regarding health.
  5. HobeSoundDarryl macrumors 604


    Feb 8, 2004
    Hobe Sound, FL (20 miles north of Palm Beach)
    At last Mr. Tesla... at last! http://www.teslasociety.com/tesla_tower.htm

    Maybe 2018 will actually bring something in that direction... only 100+ years later.

    Of course, now that a way has been figured out to monetize the wireless transmissions, something like this can actually come to market and be used. Tesla's original idea would have basically given electricity users FREE access to power... and we can't have that. Much, much better to string up wires, poles and the all-important meters.
  6. RowellE macrumors regular


    Mar 5, 2012
    Though this is what wireless charging should be like, I don’t think Apple will use this technology. Why? Because they want to keep selling their current chargers and their new AirPower pads at crazy prices.
  7. chetttos macrumors newbie

    Aug 4, 2014
    What if AirPower does that? Send power through air? So it's not complete until 2018. Crazy right¿?
  8. longpath macrumors member


    Apr 21, 2003
    I'd love to see this, especially if the power transmitters got integrated into the CarPlay specification and into future versions of the HomePod.
  9. Amazing Iceman macrumors 68040

    Amazing Iceman

    Nov 8, 2008
    Florida, U.S.A.

    You can do that now with a regular charger, just tie it around your waist and plug it into your phone in your pocket.
    No need to wait, plus you won't be tripping and falling because there's nothing tied to your foot.
  10. longpath macrumors member


    Apr 21, 2003
    What keeps Apple from selling Energous tech integrated into HomePod or similar high margin product?
  11. 69Mustang macrumors 603


    Jan 7, 2014
    In between a rock and a hard place
    Engergous... offering a 3ft trickle charge. Yay, I guess. Maybe this will help mitigate the possible losses at Dialog Semi if Apple brings power management in-house. Hahahahahaha. No. For those unaware of what I'm rambling about, Dialog is basically the shadow owner of Energous. Technically they aren't but practically speaking...

    If it's not clear, I think Energous is butt.
  12. Iconoclysm macrumors 68020


    May 13, 2010
    Washington, DC
    It's all around you already, in the form of cell phone and wifi and much, much more.
  13. 69Mustang macrumors 603


    Jan 7, 2014
    In between a rock and a hard place
    3ft. You'd need to be within 3ft to charge. The closer the better since the charging power diminishes with distance. Who is going to be less than 3ft from a speaker just to charge a phone? I would guess not many.
  14. travis64 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 18, 2008
    Sounds like it would Cause cancer or something
  15. asdavis10 macrumors 6502


    Feb 3, 2008
    I'm ready for truly wireless charging like this, however, I'd want there to be some kind of user controls to set when your phone will automatically charge. Otherwise batteries will be constantly charging. I'd either want it to automatically charge at 50% or when I tell it to.
  16. AppleWarMachine macrumors 65816


    Sep 27, 2011
    Michigan, US
    3ft, nightstand or desktop charging... that is all :( (nothing new)
  17. kdarling, Dec 27, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2017

    kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    The most knowledgeable response so far.

    1. Dialog has already announced that Apple is going to drop them, and they're the exclusive suppliers for Energous chips. Although perhaps Apple could license to make their own for their own use. Unclear.

    2. This is only for a trickle charge within 35" in a small cone from the transmitter. And any movement inside 20" turns it off.

    Here's the FCC explanation of the device:


    Here's a photo of the antenna and its inner exclusion zone. Any movement... even breathing... inside of 20" (50cm) and it shuts off for about 30 secs to keep from transmitting into human flesh over SAR limits.


    I am not an antenna engineer, but the filing seems to indicate that the 12 antennas in the transmitter combined send about 10 watts (*). No idea how much total power is available at a nominal 60cm (24") distance, but since by that point it meets SAR standards, it's gotta be a trickle. (For antenna types, the test results show 45-75 v/ms at inner to outer test pockets.)

    Plus, according to the filing it works best if the phone is in landscape mode, and an inch or so off the table. So by the time you worry about:
    • finding enough clear space on your desk to put it (!),
    • the phone's correct placement,
    • staying inside 3 feet almost directly in front, and yet
    • not making any movements inside the 20" safety arc,

    you might as well use a cable or inductive charging stand.

    In short, this is just another Energous BS filing designed to keep naive investors around.

    (*) Which is why this was filed under Part 18 for industrial / science / medical devices instead of the usual consumer Part 15 with its max 1 Watt output.
  18. Chupa Chupa macrumors G5

    Chupa Chupa

    Jul 16, 2002
    Slow down cowboys. This just got certification. It will be a year (at least) before we see it built into any major products. Likely to see accessory cases and adapters first -- similar to how Qi started. Manufacturers will not be rushing into adopting until they see it working well in real life. Also the 3 ft range is really just the tip of the iceberg here. It's not going to be truly useful for most people unless it has at least the same range at BT 5.0.
  19. techpr macrumors 6502


    Sep 9, 2008
    San Juan, PR
    If FCC approved I'm pretty sure is safe.
  20. scrapesleon macrumors 6502a


    Mar 30, 2017
    Too much radiation in one room but that’s the real wireless charging
  21. maxfromdenmark macrumors member


    May 8, 2011
    3 ft only? It looks much better on the illustration.
  22. Wide opeN macrumors 6502a

    Wide opeN

    Aug 27, 2010
    Then at that point it becomes about the pervasiveness of the transmitters.

    This is great news for the future of cell phone batteries.
  23. justperry macrumors G3


    Aug 10, 2007
    In the core of a black hole.
    Magnetic resonance charging has more potential than this.
  24. natevandam macrumors newbie

    Jan 5, 2017
    Right. And Apple will never stop selling their software on CDs because they want to keep selling their USB SuperDrive.
  25. kdarling, Dec 27, 2017
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2017

    kdarling macrumors demi-god


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    And with movement like using it while charging, only between about 2 ft and 3 ft in a 70 degree arc.

    Outside of that relatively small area, it shuts off.


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