With the Internet of Things (IoT), the basic requirement is having devices connected to the internet to exchange useful pieces of information that can be leveraged to perform several operations. However, there’s a catch. With the need to have these devices always connected to the internet and exchange information, there needs to be a constant power source that drives the sensors present on them. Over the years, companies have been developing new solutions to find a better and more efficient source of energy. And it seems a startup finally has something to offer.
Wiliot, which claims itself to be the semiconductor pioneer and innovator, is the startup that claims to have created the first-ever battery-free Bluetooth sensor tag that runs without a battery. Instead, it uses energy from other radio frequency sources like Bluetooth, Cellular, and Wi-Fi to power its Bluetooth-powered ARM processor. In addition to that, it uses nanowatt computing to communicate with the devices that are enabled by Bluetooth Low Energy technology.
Wiliot says, its chips are glued to a simple antenna and printed on either plastic or paper, which can authenticate the proximity of a product by an encrypted serial number. The lack of a battery and a tiny paper-thin design reduces the overall production cost of the sensor tag and makes it convenient for use with other devices.
Here’s what the CEO of Wiliot has to say about the product:
We believe that disposable electronics based on battery-free, low-cost systems are the foundation for future IoT systems. We are on the edge of dramatically changing the way products are made, how they are distributed, where and when they are sold, and how they are used and recycled.
To give an idea on the usability of Wiliot, the company also showcased some of the use cases scenarios of their Bluetooth-free sensor tag. Some of these include- Embedding the tags in the supply chain to allow real-time tracking of goods, throughout the entire process. Using the tags, instead of limited battery life dongles to track the location of products. Attaching the tags to home products to order them automatically every time they turn empty. And many more, the possibilities are endless.
Wiliot managed to raise a $30 Million Series B funding from some of the major players like Amazon Web Services, Avery Dennison, and Samsung. Talking about the launch of the product, Wiliot says that it has plans for a limited release in 2019. However, it would not be before the year 2020 that we see the product being widely available across the globe.