Energous gets first FCC certification for over-the-air wireless charging

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By Wisse Hettinga

Opening up a new era of wireless charging, the WattUp Mid Field transmitter underwent rigorous, multi-month testing to verify it met consumer safety and regulatory requirements. It is the first Part 18 FCC approved power-at-a-distance wireless charging transmitter, and marks a significant milestone for the consumer electronics industry – paving the way for future wireless charging ubiquity for nearly any small electronic device such as smartphones, tablets, fitness trackers, smart watches, earbuds, wireless keyboards and mice, smart speakers and more. Part 18 rules permit higher-power operations than are permitted under the Part 15 rules that have been used to approve other at a distance charging devices.

The WattUp Mid Field transmitter can deliver RF power to WattUp-enabled electronic devices at a distance of up to three feet. As the only technology that can do both contact-based and non-contact-based wireless charging, as well as charge multiple devices at once, WattUp is highly scalable and automatically charges devices, as needed, until they are topped off. In contrast with older charging technologies that allow for only contact-based charging, Energous is the only company with the ability to do both contact-based charging of devices (including fast charging large battery devices such as smartphones and tablets), as well as power-at-a-distance.

Further, the WattUp ecosystem ensures interoperability between receivers and transmitters, regardless of the manufacturer, making the entire ecosystem flexible and accessible for consumers and manufacturing partners.

“Older wireless charging technologies have received limited adoption over the past 15 years, and are confined to contact-based charging only. The FCC certification of Energous’ power-at-a-distance wireless charging transmitter is a major market milestone. It opens up options, outside of just contact-based charging, to Wireless Charging 2.0 – an ecosystem where devices can be charged both, via pad and at a distance,” said Stephen R. Rizzone, president and CEO of Energous. “Untethered, wire-free charging – such as charging a fitness band even while wearing it – is exactly what consumers have been waiting for. We are now in a position to move our consumer electronics, IoT and smart home customers forward at an accelerated pace.”

“WattUp from Energous represents an incredibly positive lifestyle change,” said Martin Cooper, Energous Board of Directors member and ‘Father of the Cell Phone’ – a pioneer and visionary of the wireless industry. “This ground-breaking technology allows users to automatically charge their WattUp-enabled devices without having to remove them from their wrist or pocket, plug them in or place them on a mat to charge, freeing them from ever having to think about charging their devices again.”

This FCC certification is the first step in enabling commercial applications fo this technology as Energous sees WattUp transmitter technology continuing to advance in both power, distance, efficiency and scale.

“Providing meaningful power-at-a-distance is a real game changer for wireless charging,” said Mark Tyndall, senior vice president corporate development and strategy, Dialog Semiconductor. “As the strategic partner and exclusive world-wide supplier of Energous’ WattUp technology, Dialog provides early adopters with the assurance of chip supply and support that comes from a top tier semiconductor company that ships millions of chips each month into some of the world’s most demanding customers.”

The latest WattUp technology will be demonstrated at CES 2018, and is perceived as a major inflection point that will lead to wide-spread use of wireless charging.


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