Science and Tech
By Liyo Kikon
Energy generation is probably the biggest problem in this world and with technology growing at an exponential rate, every single device we own needs energy to run in the form of batteries, either rechargeable or disposable. But the Matrix team has come up with a new technology which uses our body heat to charge its smartwatch. Much like the movie “The Matrix”, where robots harvest the human body to generate energy, the Matrix Powerwatch makes use of the heat generated from our body to keep the smart watch running. It uses a thermoelectric technology which converts heat to electric power. Even though this is not a new technology since NASA used this same technology to power the ‘Voyager’ spacecraft and the mars rover ‘Curiosity’, this is probably the first time a technology has been implemented into such a neat consumer product. What this means in short is that as long as you wear it, the Powerwatch will never run out of power!
This Powerwatch is a beautiful device and is built using rugged aircraft-grade aluminum and it syncs with your smartphone via bluetooth. It has all the featues you would expect from a smartwatch, such as activity tracker, sleep tracker, calculate the amount of calories burned and step counter. It also has micro-applications such as timer and stopwatch and obviously you can change the watch face to match your style. It has one of the most accurate calorie count since our body turns calories into heat and the Powerwatch uses this heat to charge itself, it can accurately measure the calories you burn. And since you never have to charge this watch, there are no power ports of any kind and this makes the watch well sealed and is water resistant up to 50 meters, you can comfortably wear it and go swimming with it without any worries.
One of the really cool feature that this watch provides is that you can find out the amount of “electrical power” you generate! It encourages you to work out and take part in activities outside. The human body generates around 100 Watts when it is at rest and this is similar to that of a incandescent light bulb and when exercising, our body can generate around 1 Kilo Watt which can actually power an entire house! Maybe in the future, we will all be powering our homes using just our body heat, but for now, we can at least use this energy to power a smart watch. For few places in Nagaland where the weather is really cold especially during winter, you might think that such a technology might not work since it requires body heat but here’s the kicker, as long as you are breathing and able to move around, your body will still be generating energy and the thermoelectric technology developed by the Matrix team is said to work best in cold weather. At night, when you take the Powerwatch off to go to sleep, the watch will automatically go to sleep mode after storing all your data and it will switch on by itself when you put it on the next morning. All your activity data, your preferences and other data on the Powerwatch will be synced with your phone and stored in the cloud so that you will never lose your data. And it also works with the apps you already have such as Apple Healthkit, Google Fit and others.
There are a lot of smart watches out right now, and all of them require a charger. Smartwatches made by Pebble are the only one which can last for days and even weeks but even that needs the occasional charging, moreover, Pebble has been disbanded so there literally is no other watch available right now with long battery life. And with most watches you will have to get used to charging it every night. It took me a couple of days to get used to charging my Moto 360 every night when I go to sleep and even though I’m quite used to it now, having a smartwatch which you never have to charge sounds extremely appealing, especially for anyone who does not have time to bother with charging another device. This technology can actually be considered to be at its infancy right now, but it will obviously catch on and we will soon see a range of wearable devices which will charge themselves. Who knows, maybe in just a few years, we may never have to charge our cell phones or any devices.
You can get the Matrix Powerwatch by joining their Indigogo Campaign. There are still a few “Early Birds” offer available but you will need to hurry since they can run out very quickly. The Early Birds offer will cost you around Rs. 8,700. There are still 24 days left in the campaign but the project is already fully funded so it obviously means that this watch will be awesome.