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Breakthrough tech promises to double smartphone battery life

Published Nov 1st, 2012 6:24PM EDT
Smartphone Battery Life Breakthrough

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Few things present a bigger barrier to mobile advancements than battery life. Companies like Apple (AAPL) and Microsoft (MSFT) are spending billions on research and development and we can’t even imagine some of the exciting mobile technologies they have tucked away in their labs. Whether or not some of those technologies will ever reach the mass market depends in large part on whether or not battery technology improves enough to power them. According a new report, the future could be closer than we think.

Cambridge, Massachusetts-based startup Eta Devices claims it has solved a power efficiency problem that is decades old, MIT’s Technology Review blog reports. The company’s founders, both MIT electrical engineers, say they have invented a new power amplifier design that could double the battery life of popular consumer electronics devices like smartphones.

Inefficiencies in RF power amplifiers, which convert low-power radio signals into higher-power signals, are blamed for much of the power loss in cell phones and other devices, and this new breakthrough could have a tremendous impact on the industry. Eta Devices is hoping to make its new technology commercially available beginning next year in LTE base stations before scaling the tech down to microchips at some point after that.

Zach Epstein
Zach Epstein Executive Editor

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content. Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment.

His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.