Wireless Power by Radio Frequency

Wireless power has the potential to improve people lives who

depend on technology, such as hearing aids.

NOTE: Omri Lachman is co-founder and CEO of Humavox, a company operating in the wireless power technology area.

Wireless power is a necessity for the Internet of Things (IoT), but issues integrating the technology into electronic devices have halted innovation in wireless power. The challenge of integrating these solutions into devices is that many of the solutions today require space within the device that forces the manufacturer to design around it, the technology cannot be scaled down to fit inside smaller devices and wireless charging requires users to learn how to use the technology. For wireless charging solutions to reach their full potential within IoT, wireless charging must be approached in a way that allows manufacturers to implement wireless power in a way that is conducive to the overall user experience of their device.

One method that solves these problems is generating power through radio frequency (RF), the same technology that Wi-Fi is based on, which works by transmitting power through an antenna and receiver. Companies such as Humavox, an Israeli startup that TI has been supporting as part of its wireless charging solution for wearable devices and portable healthcare devices, are pioneering RF wireless charging. RF charging is not limited by device size, orientation, or precise placement like most other methods of wireless power, meaning the technology can be applied to virtually any device and provides a wireless charging station for multiple devices of different sizes, shapes and power requirements.

Looking beyond mobile devices, RF wireless power solutions have the potential to revolutionize how users interact with technology in truly life-changing ways. For example, hearing aid users rely on working devices to hear, but today’s models require battery replacement around once a week. Instead of this costly and inefficient powering method, a reliable, scaled wireless charging platform can enable the hearing impaired to simply drop their wireless charging enabled hearing aids into a receiver on their nightstand and charge while they sleep.

The Humavox charging Nest™ has the ability to charge multiple devices at once.

The flexibility of RF allows manufacturers to create charging stations as simple as a bowl to store and charge several devices, or integrate into a car cup holder, the case of a wearable device, a hotel safe or even a toy box. Because there is no limit to the size of the wireless charging technology or the devices it charges, it can even be used for military purposes such as charging an entire platoon’s AR goggles or communication devices in one secure area. The technology is so elastic that it can even be implemented into a mobile charging device for users who rely on medical devices such as glucose monitors while traveling.