Throw away the batteries! Samsung’s amazing new remote control uses your Wi-Fi to charge

Samsung’s SolarCell Remote may be the very first to charge wirelessly through your router.

The South Korean tech giant has taken the Eco-friendly solar powered remote control it was showcased at CES last year and gave it a remarkable upgrade for CES 2022: the ability to harvest RF signals from your router to maintain a load.

The concept of RF energy harvesting is not new. The ubiquity of RF signals from Wi-Fi and outdoor cellular systems makes it an attractive, low-power energy solution for systems that may not necessarily be connected to AC or DC cabling. But this may be the first time the technology has been used in consumer electronics. Unlike other wireless charging solutions, such as near-field Qi, the Eco Remote does not need to be very close or in contact with the router (it only works with RF signals from 2.4 GHz). RF energy harvesting can – unobstructed – reach devices up to 40 meters away.

Samsung SolarCell remote control

The new Samsung SolarCell remote control (Image credit: Samsung)

Since the remote control does not need a charging base and uses a pair of wireless charging technologies (solar and RF energy harvesting), it can constantly sip power from your router and, if it is face down, of the solar panel on the back which can be charged via your bedside lamp. According to Samsung, the remote doesn’t even need batteries. There must be some place to store sipped energy, however. Samsung told us, “There is no lithium-ion battery in the remote. What it has, according to Samsung, is a capacitor. A capacitor can store small amounts of energy. Unlike batteries which do this chemically, capacitors do so physically in a form close to static electricity.

“Whether it’s a sunny day or the middle of the night, the battery stays fully charged by collecting radio waves from routers and converting them into power,” Samsung representatives told TechToSee.

The SolarCell remote is made from recycled materials and is now available in black or white (the previous model was available in black only). Samsung said it ships with all 2022 Samsung 4K and 8K QLED TVs.


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