This is to violate the laws of physics. It must be dangerous. It should not be possible. This is what critics have come to the conclusion, in spite of the fact, without knowing the details of the wireless technology in power uBeam. So instead of letting rumors circulate today uBeam showed a bunch of details about how far, how fast and easy as it can charge your phone without wires.
“People say that investment [$ 23.4 million] in uBeam it all wrong with Silicon Valley” uBeam co-founder and CEO of Meredith Perry tells me, referring to the name of its largest investors startup. They include Andreessen Horowitz, Founders Fund, advance Ventures, Marissa Mayer, and Mark Cuban.
“But everything else is there, and the application of social photo sharing stuff,” Perry argues ,. “We are building something real. We are building something that is incredibly difficult. So difficult people think that we are crooks.”
The skepticism is important when it comes to hard scientific startups. Theranos, for example, seemed to get too much benefit of the doubt. I was skeptical about the uBeam, and will be until I see it with my own eyes. But the potential of innovation, as important as the wireless power deserves to be approached with an open mind.
If skepticism is based solely on the vague assumption leads to premature conclusions, becomes blind cynicism.
For an overview of the wireless power ultrasound uBeam, read this deep dive. But in fact, the transmitters on the walls of a room monitor device uBeam receivers and send inaudible ultrasound high beams on them. The receiver converts the vibration sound into electricity, which charges the connected device.
Since ultrasound is the right frequency and intensity, it is safe to use around humans and animals, but it requires a clear line of sight and can not charge through walls or closed. Not only can uBeam phone chargers power of wireless, but light bulbs, appliances and much more.
Now, here are some facts about uBeam, that people have asked for years, but never published until now:
- uBeam uses a powerful air link ultrasonic transducer for transmission and reception of sound waves on the same frequency at the level of 45kHz, 75kHz to a yield of 145dB to 155dB (or 316 W / m2 – 3 kW / m2)
- uBeam can charge multiple devices at the same time within a radius of 4 meters from one transmitter
- uBeam designed to deliver at least 1.5 W of power smartphones, or enough to keep the phone from the loss of life of the battery, even when heavily used. Depending on the number of devices simultaneously charged one transmitter, and depending on the distance from these devices to the transmitter, uBeam can charge the device at comparable rates to a wire or faster.
- uBeam has 30-plus patents filed and 6 issued by one of them. At the heart of the technology is its transmitter, which the company believes can deliver more power at the right frequency, than any other.
- The patents also cover technology, including an ultrasonic phased array transmitter which includes thousands of PF individually addressable and controllable elements, its algorithms beamforming that may form and direct a plurality of beams to several mobile devices, and the receiver, which may yield acoustic power of these beams coming from different angles.
- When you start uBeam plans to sell its transmitters and work with partners to install them in public places, like restaurants, hotels, cafes or. It is also how to sell the phone, the receiver and work with partners to lend their patrons places with transmitters installed.
information here about the focused beams, frequency and decibel level dispels many of the rumors about uBeam too ineffective or unsafe. Claims about a significant loss of power to the distance or the potential to cause burns or “ultrasonic sickness” were based on assumptions that uBeam to emit sound at low frequencies and higher volume levels ,.
However, most people can not look at this data and conclude if uBeam plausible. So I spoke with two experts in the space, which considered these details to get your thoughts.
Dr. Matt O’Donnell, the doctor is is one of the world’s leading experts in ultrasound and is a professor emeritus and dean of engineering at the University of Washington. He writes:
“If uBeam can continuously deliver 145-155 dB ultrasound successful mobile phone, it may be possible to charge the phone at least a few watts. There is a risk multiplier in getting it all together to work, but it it may be possible. If uBeam can deliver the amount of power to your phone with reasonable efficiency, hospitality and e-governance, their system does not violate the laws of physics. ”
While it can not guarantee that this technology works, he comes to the conclusion that, given the evidence, it is not impossible. It is just very hard to perform.
Dr. Babur Hadimioglu, PhD in electrical engineering from Stanford, had a similar view. It is a principle scientist Labcyte, and the Technical Advisory Board of the ultrasonic device Microsonic systems. He believes that uBeam is not impossible, but told me that he will not guarantee that it is real, until he sees. He writes:
“I had a brief overview of their technology. While the physics of ultrasound wireless power transmission is indeed possible, whether it would be useful in practical applications depends on the details of implementation, including factors related to technology acceptance that I could not appreciate. “
In fact, there is nothing stopping uBeam addition to its ability to make the system effective enough to release a commercially viable product.
There are enormous restrictions and obstacles to that, though.
First of all, you can not charge uBeam through walls, people, clothes, bags, or. You will not get juice to just having your phone in your pocket. It will have to be on the table, or to the sides. This means that uBeam may ultimately better that our device will be charged during use than charging them for later.
uBeam also refused to disclose the retail price of any of their devices. By making them available to users and partners will be important. It will have to compete with the magnetic resonance-based wireless power company WiTricity, and radio wave-based Energous, which are also in a hurry to release a consumer product. uBeam can not just work. It should work well at an affordable price.
But at least we will see him soon enough. uBeam promises that the time will show a demo to people outside his team, investors and partners next year. Then we’ll see if all the facts on the paper folded into power in our hands.