This iPhone 6 case harvests energy from external radio waves

Today at the TechCrunch Disrupt event in New York, the future of smartphone batteries might have been introduced. Nikola Labs took the stage a few hours ago at the conference and unveiled a case for the iPhone 6 that can charge the smartphone by harvesting energy from external radio frequencies. 

According to the company, more than 90 percent of the energy that smartphones use to maintain voice and data connections is wasted in thin air. The case unveiled today by Nikola Labs can capture that energy and use it to charge the smartphone, allegedly expanding the battery life of the iPhone 6 by about 30 percent. 

To enable this magical charging capability, the case uses two pieces of technology developed and patented by the Ohio State University. The first is a "harvesting" antenna that can capture energy from the radio frequencies surrounding the smartphone, and the second is a RF-DC converter that transforms this energy into DC current that the smartphone can actually use. Nikola Labs says that its case can harvest energy from Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and LTE frequencies. The case does not store energy, and the process is a passive and continuous one, meaning that power is added to the smartphone very slowly.

At the TechCrunch Disrupt NewYork conference, the company demonstrated that the case can also draw power from radio frequencies not emitted by the smartphone: when placed next to Wi-Fi router, the case started generating DC current. 

Nikola Labs plans to transform this technology into an actual product by launching a Kickstarter campaign. The campaign will debut in about a month's time, the case will be priced at $99, and the first units are expected to start shipping at some point by the end of September.

Since this seems to be a groundbreaking technology, skeptics have already started raising their eyebrows. As soon as Nikola Labs shares more details about its case, we'll let you know.

Source: TechCrunch via Engadget



1. rick_mobile

Posts: 359; Member since: Dec 13, 2010

So they make the phone slim with a small battery, just to make it big and thick again with a case, and a less effective battery?? Smh

2. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

That's how Apple takes advantage of a fool; separate them from their money as much as they can while they remain unconscious about it.

4. Salazzi

Posts: 537; Member since: Feb 17, 2014

The "blame Apple" game is getting old now. It only makes YOU look like the fool. This is a 3rd party case, not a case from Apple.

8. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

its still apple's fault that they make iPhone have such small battery

12. bambamboogy02

Posts: 842; Member since: Jun 23, 2012

The point MrElectrifyer is trying to make is, people want a bigger battery in their iphones, or else there wouldn't be a market for battery cases, now would there? Apple chooses to not listen to it's customers, and makes a device with so-so battery life. Why not add a little girth to the device, and give it a bigger juicer? That is the point, of his/her comment.

14. MrElectrifyer

Posts: 3960; Member since: Oct 21, 2014

Old? How's that when Apple is still doing the same s**t as always; proudly making their users professional wall huggers? There's no reason (besides intentionally milking shortsighted followers, like you seem to be), that a phone that's as expensive as the iPhone can't last all day without one of these nonsense accessories. My OnePlus One does a lot more than what the iPhone officially has to offer, especially with root tweaks, yet I still go through an entire day (or even more) on a single charge, not to talk if being reasonably priced.

5. Sauce5 unregistered

Yep. Apple TOTALLY made this case. Cry more.

3. ervman1

Posts: 15; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

Terrible idea..this will degrade performance of whoever is actually needing that signal. What frequencies will they mooch off?? All RF frequencies that are being transmitted are done so for a reason! As in to transfer data. I have to believe this will violate FCC requirements. I'd hate to have poor downlink/uplink performance because the inconsiderate jerk next to me wants a charge!

6. 99nights

Posts: 1152; Member since: Mar 10, 2015

That's some cool technology. Damn this site is riddled with ads now..

9. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

my uBlock extension say 17 ads blocked, try to use ABP, it may block many more ads than that :D

7. Wiencon

Posts: 2278; Member since: Aug 06, 2014

I wish so much that Apple stopped makin iPhones thinner and thinner because it doesn't give ANY advantages and only makes battery sucks. I always knew that Apple doesn't care about customers but this is just bad idea.

10. ibend

Posts: 6747; Member since: Sep 30, 2014

after reading this, now i think solar panel in phone case is more effective than this new case :-/

11. iLovesarcasm

Posts: 589; Member since: Oct 20, 2014

Just as I predicted, the innovation will be passed on the third-party iPhone case maker. No more innovations in Apple because Jobs is dead, they can only make it fancy and put tons of hype so it can sell.

13. chauletb

Posts: 1; Member since: May 05, 2015

Hi, yes it's dream concept but still Sci-Fi and will create a lot of noise about. Seriously the wireless technology is really trend and case like the Armure wireless case is a example but more practical and realistic:

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