It’s been rumored that Apple is looking to rid future iPhones of their traditional 30-Pin connector in a move to save space, but we have no idea what Apple would replace it with to handle the charging and syncing of iOS devices. iCloud has given us the ability to completely cut the cord for syncing, but recharging the device would still require a cable. Or would it? Thanks to some newly invented hi-tech fabric, it looks like future iPhones may possibly be charged using body heat in the not too distant future.
Scientists at Wake Forest University have developed a new thermoelectric cloth that generates a charge using body heat. They call it Power Felt and it looks and feels just like a regular cloth, except super magical because it makes electricity. Thermoelectric cloth has been around for a while, except it’s always been pretty expensive to produce. Power Felt’s advantage is that it can mimic current textiles and only add a couple of bucks to the price of a garment
“We waste a lot of energy in the form of heat. For example, recapturing a car’s energy waste could help improve fuel mileage and power the radio, air conditioning or navigation system,” Hewitt says. “Generally thermoelectrics are an underdeveloped technology for harvesting energy, yet there is so much opportunity… Literally, just by sitting on your phone, Power Felt could provide relief during power outages or accidents”
Researchers think that adding Power Felt to a phone’s cover may only cost $1 in the future, which would be freaking awesome. Think of how much money we’ll save on electric bills. Now I’ll have an excuse to sit around all day watching soap operas and loving on that bucket of KFC because I’ll be hard at work recharging my iPhone 6S.