By Evan Ackerman
At the end of last month, Nokia filed a patent for a “piezoelectric kinetic energy harvester” for mobile phones. If they get it to work, it will enable mobile phones to charge themselves. Brillliant! Why didn’t I think of that?
I’ll tell you why I didn’t think of that. It’s because a “piezoelectric kinetic energy harvester” works by generating electricity from crystals which are compressed by movement. So, the catch is (of course there’s a catch), you have to be moving for the phone to charge. As in, not sedentary in front of the computer. This means that people like me will have dead cell phones 99% of the time, with the remaining 1% of uptime due to bedroom to bathroom transitions plus trips to the fridge. Maybe I’ll just strap it to my cat and bust out the laser pointer for a few hours, that should do the trick.
Cat or no cat, it’s always good to see big companies trying to innovate when it comes to green energy and infinite phone calls. Or at least, it’s good to see them take the first tentative steps in the form of a patent.