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Not too long ago, I wrote a piece that described the true “current state” of wireless charging that this write-up might totally contradict. It turns out the idea of not worrying about charging batteries in devices like your remote control or having your smartphone charge while walking around your home might not be as far off as we originally thought. This is largely due in part to a newfound form of powering electronics called Cota wireless charging, which is being developed by technology company Ossia. Cota wireless charging would work with that its developers describe as the “Forever Battery,” which is a AA or AAA battery that would directly receive its power from the Cota Tile—the power source in this configuration.

The layout involves a transmitter that would be placed inside someone’s house, most likely mounted on a wall that delivers power over the 2.4 GHz spectrum to a tiny receiver in the Forever Battery. Contrary to other over-the-air wireless charging technologies (like the ones described in my previous piece), the Cota Tile isn’t limited to just a few feet, and less than a handful of these devices could cover a 3000-foot home.

Not only to these tiles not require line of sight, but their max output is about 3 watts close to the tile, which becomes milliwatts further away from the base. Whether it’s in a battery, phone sleeve accessory, or other device, the Cota power receiver emits omni-directional signals that bounce off walls, ceilings, and other barriers, but don’t pass through people. If you recall in my previously written piece cited above, radiation exposure was one of the primary issues that kept wireless charging from broadening its effective charging range.

In addition, the Cota power system is also smart enough to relay bits of data, enabling the tile to prioritize accordingly by knowing which devices need power the most. This form of prioritization can even be further customized by using the cloud. A wireless ISP, for example, could link up with an establishment like a café and deliver free wireless charging to subscribers, which would make the location of where you sit (which is a big deal in many shops due to the location of the WiFi router) not as big of a deal anymore.

While the concept is truly innovative, the Cota Tile does have some immediate drawbacks, like its large size and (when it hits the public market) price, which is projected to be around several hundred dollars in the beginning. While these flaws may only be limited to the technology’s early years, this shouldn’t downplay the Cota Tile’s room for growth, which could eventually be applied into everything from televisions and refrigerators to various types of furniture. Its developers even have plans to eventually incorporate this technology in the interior of vehicles of automotive giants like Mercedes, Audi, Ford, and Toyota.

More applications will surely be developed for Corta technology in the near future that we could even start seeing in places we shop. Corta’s developers are reportedly working with retailers to develop electronic price signs, for example, whose prices could be changed at will. This would enable companies to match prices of their competitors in close to real time, instead of waiting hours or days to take effect. Cota Tiles would give these signs the power needed to operate, using their charging devices that would be installed in the ceiling, or mounted on the wall in one of these stores.

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