Category: Gear

Yo! WATTUp (TM) is Bringing Wireless Charging to the Future

by Marty Kaufman

Open Outlet is constantly in search of the latest charging technology designed to better our lives. In the area of wireless charging, one company (for the moment) stands out among its peers and may change the way we use our wireless devices, forever. Energous Corporation (“Energous®”) (ticker symbol WATT), is the developer of WattUp(TM), a revolutionary wire-free charging technology for mobile and IoT devices that provides “over-the-air” power at a distance of up to 15 feet. Yes, ladies and gentlemen. It appears that the “holy grail” of wireless charging is on its way and will eventually be incorporated into all of your wireless devices, including smartphones, tablets and wearables.

Picture this: You walk into your local coffee house, dead cell phone in hand, dead watch on wrist, and no charging cable anywhere to be found. Not to worry. Your local java proprietor happens to love technology. Front and center in his store is a wireless charging kiosk. Miraculously your devices are brought back from the dead, much like Lazarus on a Sunday afternoon. Yes…this is the snapshot of your future, thanks to WATT.

Watt just released its financial results for its latest quarter. While the company is far from profitable, it is growing rapidly. In its report, WATT reported that it has “partnered” with a “Tier One Consumer Electronics” company for the development and licensing of embedded “WattUp technology” which will be incorporated into various products including, but not limited to, mobile consumer electronics and related accessories. More importantly, WATT reported that it developed the world’s “First RF (“radio frequency”) Power Receive Chip which directs current (DC) into an integrated circuit (IC) that is designed to power smaller wearable and Internet of Things (IoT) devices that require 10 watts or less. WATT reports this application-specific integrated circuit (ASIC) is the first of its kind in the world and measures just 3mm x 3mm. Apparently, the WATT technology will allow a device to draw a charge, wirelessly, from several feet away.

Forgive our “gushing” over the potential for a smartphone to catch a wireless charge, simply from being located anywhere near a transmitter. Until we see it, we hold a respectful level of “oh yeah” skepticism. However, from the looks of things WATT is about to change lives. Stay tuned.

Xoopar’s Mini Squid USB Charger


This is a unique portable charger in that it has two USB ports to charge two devices at the same time, and it sports a unique suction cup backing so that it can stick to the back of your case-less phone or tablet or to the table or wall. And it comes pre-charged.

Also included are a small micro USB cable for charging and a velvet sack to keep the cable and the unit together and protected.

My Starbucks Is Better Than Your Starbucks 

It’s not because they have a blonde roast or a clean bathroom. It’s not because there are plenty of comfy leather couches. 

It’s because they have Qi charging rings for iPhones with Lightning adapter or classic 30-pin. 

 Yet, despite the numerous rings there aren’t that many Powermat Charging Spots to actually receive a charge. 

And if you have ever used a Powermat before, you’re better off NOT using your iPhone while charging because it is very easy to “break” the wireless connection. 

Alas, it’s better than not having the ability to charge. That’s so 2015 Q1. 

Download our iPhone app and say goodbye to #lowbattery and hello #openoutlet. 

https://appsto.re/us/XLA15.i

iOS 9’s New Low Power Mode Feature

One reason to update your iPhone’s operating system to 9.0 is to get some automatic assistance when you are at 20% battery life. 

  

Instead of manually doing all those suggestions, one tap of the Continue button does that for you. 

With the Open Outlet app, you could navigate yourself to an open outlet and maybe buy yourself a coffee. 

Cheers,

Richard

The OAIR 6000mAh Battery

Made in China with the same design sense as Apple from its packaging to the device itself. When Johnny introduced me to this device I thought I saw every battery charger out there (thanks to curating my Pinterest board). What makes the OAIR different from the others, ironically, is its heft.


Shrinking a battery also shrinks its capacity. For one time emergency use its nice to have a battery the fits in your back pocket and you can actually sit on it. I know that’s only good enough for about 35% battery gain and practically speaking 20 minutes of email, surfing and talking.

When you’re carrying a backpack or a bag, what’s another six ounces that can boost a few iPhones while traveling?

That’s where the OAIR 6000 fits–in the middle. And perfect for the urban public transport traveller who uses their iPhone and their laptop to conduct global and local activities.

Its heft is welcomed because of its gold finish. It features that same gold tone as the iPhone 6 and the same matte textured finish as the Bluetooth track pad (shown above) or a MacBook. It’s cool to the touch when not being charged or charging. And it’s so damn cool to look at, hold and behold.

More than a battery, it also represents well-designed electronics coming from China to enhance our lives, one charge at a time.

On Your Person Charging

I am not always carrying a backpack or driving around in a car, even though I live in Los Angeles. Sometimes I am physically parked at a cafe surfing the web feverishly, sipping a hot tea, for hours on my iPhone. I can be researching, emailing, playing some Crossy Road, listening to Spotify, checking in on my cat using Homeboy, and monitoring my health with Fitbit. There’s a lot to do with an iPhone these days, as long as my battery is full enough.

That leads me to a wonderful combination of two gadgets that I can carry on my person without feeling much impact (like carrying my laundry on my head). You’ll find these two among 659 other unique charging-related pins on my Pinterest Board #OpenOutlet.

In my wallet, and back pocket, is Triple C’s Ultra-Thin 1300mAh battery. It’s about as thick as five credit cards. The only indicator is both a button and a 3-way indicator light to let you know how much battery life you have. There’s a micro USB port for recharging the battery and a standard female USB port for charging any smartphone. The USB port has a cover that slides up and over to expand the USB port. Since it’s designed to slip into a wallet, it’s likely designed to support the weight of my butt (at least 185 pounds) on it daily, and throughout the day I do impact testing (sitting, standing, sitting, standing, etc.).

Triple C’s Ultra Thin wallet-sized USB battery

On my key chain, also with little impact in weight or bulk, is ChargeKey’s Lightning to USB cable. It’s mostly a rubber, flimsy cable, without the metal cover that often accompanies a USB cable (less likely lint will be trapped inside this cover). The ‘handle’ that connects to your key chain is made of a harder plastic, so even as you shove it in your pocket multiple times a day, it never feels like it’s going to break off.

ChargeKey’s key chain Lightning to USB cable

 

The dynamic duo in action!

 

The combination of both of these essential charging gadgets makes it very easy for me to be well-prepared in the event that I have to charge up my #lowbattery or assist in helping someone else out.

I highly recommend this pair!