Power Over Wi-Fi Technology: What is it?

December 22, 2015 11:42 pm

Can you imagine charging your device wirelessly over a regular Internet router? This may become a possibility sooner than you think (if you even thought about it at all).
So, how will this new concept work, what are its limitations, and what other benefits can it bring to the table?
The scientific paper, Powering the Next Billion Devices over Wi-Fi, comes from the University of Washington and discusses the possibility of supplying power to devices and extending battery life.
Here’s how it works:
Today’s Wi-Fi routers are already capable of transmitting power. But instead of its usual intermittent signal, it will be designed to emit a constant 1W signal. Harvesters then capture and convert it into DC power.
How will it affect Wi-Fi signal?
The upgraded PoWiFi was tested on six homes in Seattle. Researchers came back with results that showed four out of six did not notice any difference, while one commented on how their Internet speed improved.
What’s in store for the future?
The PoWiFi technology, while promising, is still not the right means to charge your smartphone, tablet, and other mobile devices. Why? Because it’s simply not enough to do so efficiently. Right now, FCC regulations limit routers to an output of 1W.
Just to give you an idea, the typical output of Android and iPhone chargers is at 5W.
Apart from the restrictions (which could be lifted in the future), PoWiFi does not have the capacity to power devices at lightning speed. So, while the potential to power smaller devices is there, this technology remains to be in its infantile stages.
In the meantime, it may be best to stick with your chargers – at least for the foreseeable future.
Stay tuned to learn more useful tips on how to get the best possible connection at home. To know the best internet plans for your home, you can visit our Plan Guru or call sales on 13 22 88. Our friendly representatives will help you choose the best nbn™ and how to connect.

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