Israeli startup turns luminaires into wireless power chargers: Page 3 of 4

January 15, 2018 // By Julien Happich
At CES in Las Vegas, Israeli startup Wi-Charge unveiled the first ever solution of room lighting combined with wireless charging, designed for a café environment. The FDA-approved solution, dubbed LIGHT, can deliver up to 2.5W of power at a distance of up to 5 meters, simultaneously recharging a number of mobile and multimedia battery-powered applications across a room, totalling up to 50Wh/day.

Different implementations of Wi-Charge's transmitters and receivers.

First, the company wants to extend its wireless power infrastructure through B2B partnerships in corporate offices, or public places such as coffee shops and restaurants, where the receivers could be integrated into different form factors. That could be smartphone cases or dongles for customers to use. Interestingly, one practical example Vaisleib gave us was that of wireless charging mats. In order to be integrated into furniture, those need to be wired. But typically in coffee shops and restaurants, about 70 to 75% of actual seating area and tables is free standing, meaning they can't be wired easily. But you could have ceiling-mounted transmitters beaming their power to charging mats integrated into cable-free furniture.

"We are not announcing partnerships yet, but we are engaged with several manufacturers. After a number of years, once we have built an infrastructure, we see a mixture of business models. Selling the hardware may not be the best of them. We could offer monthly subscriptions for maintenance and upgrades, in some business models, we may retain ownership of the hardware and collect valuable data".

"With a map of our infrastructure, we could tip people where to go to charge their phone. The data collected would be subordinated to the needs of customers. We can tell if your battery has depleted by 40%, end-users could decide what kind of profile charge they want for their battery so it can last longer".

With such an infrastructure, mobile operators may want to offer tier services only to their subscribers, for example offering fast charging to one type of subscriber or less charge top-up to others. A coffee shop or restaurant could operate specific charge restrictions per table or per customers based on loyalty programs. Power delivery could be completely software-configurable, so a casino operator could want to provide only trickle charge to its customers, so they would stay longer.


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