Do you own a smartwatch? If you do, you probably know how annoying it is to charge it every day or so. Most smartwatches have a short battery life and require you to find a time when you’re not using it to assess it.
But what if there was a better way to charge your smartwatch? What if you could attach a small charger and keep using it? What if you could replace the battery of your watch as you do with your remote control?
Xiaomi has come up with a patent for charging technology for smartwatches. The patent describes two chargers that use magnets to hold them in place and set the watch via contacts or wireless charging. They are similar to Apple’s MagSafe Battery Pack or Smart Battery Case, designed for iPhones.
However, Xiaomi’s chargers have some drawbacks, such as blocking part of the screen or covering the biosensor on the back of the watch. Therefore, they may need to be more practical and user-friendly. A better solution would be integrating the charger into the eye or making the watch battery removable.
Why would that be better? You can wear your smartwatch for various activities, such as sports, work, or leisure when you’re not charging your smartwatch. It can track your fitness data, notify you of messages, and even make calls or payments. But when you’re setting it, your smartwatch becomes useless. You can’t wear it on your wrist or use its features. It’s just an expensive alarm clock.
The problem is that charging is inevitable for any smartwatch. Even if your watch has a long battery life of one month, you still have to find a time when you don’t need it to charge it. And that’s not easy because most smartwatches also offer sleep tracking as one of their main features. You want to ensure you get that valuable data by sacrificing your sleep time for charging.
But if your watch had a removable battery, you could replace it with a fully charged one whenever needed. You wouldn’t have to worry about finding a power outlet or a cable. You wouldn’t have to take off your watch or interrupt your activities. You could keep using your eye as usual.
Using removable batteries for smartwatches is challenging, though. It would increase the design complexity and difficulty of the watch, as it would require more space and parts to accommodate the battery slot or connector. It would also affect the waterproofing and durability of the eye, as it would create openings or gaps that could expose the watch to water, dust, or other elements.
Therefore, using removable batteries for smartwatches would require careful engineering and testing to ensure they are safe and reliable. It would also require convincing consumers that they are worth buying and carrying around.
But if done right, using removable batteries for smartwatches could also create new opportunities and possibilities for wearable devices. It could extend their battery life and functionality beyond what is currently possible. It could also create new business models and services for battery providers and users.
Xiaomi’s patent could inspire us to think about these possibilities. Although it’s still far from becoming a reality, it shows us that smartwatch charging doesn’t have to be tedious or inconvenient. It could be fun and innovative. And that’s something that we could all look forward to.