The Samsung Galaxy Watch patent signifies a photo voltaic charging strap

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When the first modern, fully equipped smartwatches hit the market almost eight years ago, they were mostly laughed at because of the need for daily charging. Even Apple’s first Apple Watch received a lot of criticism for this, and the smartwatch industry hasn’t exactly made leaps in battery life. Analogous to the smartphone market, smartwatch manufacturers have resorted to indirect strategies to either reduce power consumption or speed up charging, but a Samsung patent wants to make this disputed by constantly charging the smartwatch, even when it is on the wrist.

Because of their smaller size, smartwatches have even bigger battery problems than smartphones. Smartwatches have gotten more powerful, adding new sensors that negate virtually any energy efficiency improvements that new processors and software bring with them. Although there are ways to reduce battery consumption through secondary processors or energy-saving displays, it would be better if the devices did not have to be charged at all or at least every night.

A new patent granted in 2019 reveals Samsung’s almost ingenious solution. Essentially, the smartwatch is always charging, or at least has backup batteries that are always charged and ready to turn on when the smartwatch’s main power supply drops. These batteries are located in the belts and are constantly charged by sunlight or even neon light.

According to LetsGoDigital, the patent is a polymer with quantum dots, the same quantum dot technology it uses for its QLED TVs and some new laptops. These capture light that is passed on to solar cells, which then convert it into electrical energy. The structures are located on either side of the watch case, so either or both can receive light no matter how the smartwatch is worn.

While the technology definitely sounds attractive, there is no guarantee that Samsung will use it on the Galaxy Watch 5 or any other Galaxy Watch next year. One can only hope, however, that this could be a more effective solution to the battery problem, at least until more advanced battery technologies are developed.

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