Published: Mon, May 15, 2017
Hi-Tech | By Ellis Neal

Smartphones that charge in five minutes 'could arrive next year'

Smartphones that charge in five minutes 'could arrive next year'

This demonstration involved charging a single battery cell, and it's not clear at this point what sort of charging infrastructure is needed to make the five minute charge a reality for an entire vehicle.

Chief executive Doron Myersdorf has indicated that several big name companies are interested, but the names of the interested parties will not yet be disclosed.

Mr Myersdorf said he could not reveal which manufacturers were signed up to use the technology. Exactly how the battery works has not been announced (the technology remains proprietary); however it would appear the battery contains materials that enable "non-traditional" reactions allowing for an atypically fast transfer of ions from an anode to a cathode (the electrical process that charges a battery). The technology involves the use of nanomaterials and certain unnamed organic compounds that are being kept under wraps.

Some versions of the battery were thicker than most smartphone batteries at the time, but now Mr Myersdorf has claimed it is ready for the market.

This announcement coming from StoreDot - an Israeli startup specializing in fast-charging batteries - has the potential of becoming one of those moments, with the sole difference that this time, we were all doing the exact same thing: watching the screen of our laptops, tablets of phones.

However, Ben Wood, a technology analyst at CSS Insight told BBC News that he doubts the company can meet their target because they would need to tackle a host of technical ans safety issues, including how hot the battery would become. "Taking risks with battery technology can bite you", he said. "I would say that experience has taught me to always remain skeptical".

However, he added that anyone who did manage to crack the "battery problem" could have a transformational effect on consumer electronics. Earlier Tesla, an American auto manufacturer, has released a battery that can charge a vehicle in 75 minutes. These include chip maker Qualcomm that announced its Quick Charge 4 system previous year which offers five hours of battery life following a five-minute charge. The company demonstrated their battery which can be charged in five minutes to run an electric vehicle for 300 miles.

Myersdorf confirmed that the company had no contracts in place with any carmaker, and that the technology will take at least three years to hit public roads.

The firm said the battery provides 300 miles of range.

In comparison, Tesla's Supercharger technology requires at least 75 minutes for a full charge, according to CEO Elon Musk. A 30-minute charge would then allow for 170 miles of range with the same system.

Howeve, r real applications would depend on "whether the technology can be produced at a large enough scale" and at the right cost, he added.

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