Wireless Systems Design

Wire-Free Electricity Fuels Mobile Devices

The most obvious physical flaw in current "wireless" devices is the need to plug them in and charge them. Take the cellular phone, for instance. As its size has shrunk and its feature list has grown, neither the power setup nor the battery life has really evolved. Yet inside and outside of the industry, most people have been awaiting a truly "mobile" product, complete with a portable power source. Now, a technology may have solved that power problem for notebooks, personal digital assistants (PDAs), and mobile phones.

During product demonstrations at the Power 2002 Conference (www.power-conference.com), MobileWise, Inc. (www.mobilewise.com) launched a technology that solves the "Last Wire" problem. The company defines that problem as the dependency upon plugging in mobile devices for electric power. MobileWise demonstrated the first application of its wire-free electric-power technology, dubbed the Wire-Free-Electricity Base. That application has a power-delivery counterpart called the Wire-Free-Electricity Adapter. The adapter either resides within a mobile device or is externally attached to it. Using it, a device can draw power from the Wire-Free-Electricity Base.

The base and the adapter are designed to enable power delivery into a mobile device regardless of its location or orientation on the base's surface. The Wire-Free-Electricity Base even allows multiple mobile devices to be safely charged and powered simultaneously. The flat surface of the Wire-Free-Electricity Base resembles a small desk blotter (see figure). Once a MobileWise-enabled device is placed anywhere on the base, it will be powered and charged as if it's plugged into an electric outlet.

As far as safety is concerned, the Wire-Free-Electricity Base is as safe to use as a mouse pad. Liquid or food spills won't affect it, and it's even safe to place metallic or magnetic objects on it. It emits no harmful radiation and causes no radio interference. The technology meets the requirements of relevant safety and Electro Magnetic Compatibility (EMC) standards.

The MobileWise chip sets promise to enable safe, wire-free electric-power delivery and management to multiple mobile devices with a variety of power needs, regardless of brand. The products are immediately deployable in the aftermarket. The Wire-Free-Electricity Adapter integrates externally into most existing laptop computers and other portable electronic products. Connecting directly to the device power input, it has a tiny footprint. It does not require any redesign of the electronic circuits within the device.

TAGS: Mobile
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