Wearables and the Internet of Things (IoT) aim to bring us small, capable products that can enhance our experience far beyond what smartphones, tablets and the like can do. One of the main problems still haunting the industry is battery life. Rockchip plans to tackle this issue with their latest RKi6000 processor.
What makes this System on Chip solution special is that it offers much lower power consumption, bringing the “world’s lowest power WiFi technology”. In fact, this new chip is said to provide 85% less WiFi power consumption, compared to standard WiFi built with RF architecture. It spends about 20 mAh during use, allowing it to use a AAA battery for up to 35 years (for WiFi only).
According to Rockchip, their new WiFi technology now compares to Bluetooth 4.0 LE in terms of energy consumption, which is simply outstanding. This solves a huge issue, because WiFi connectivity has always been superior to Bluetooth, but we have been using Bluetooth because it used to offer improved energy efficiency. WiFi is stronger, has a longer reach and is a standard form of communication in most products.
Because the Rockchip RKi6000 uses so little energy, it will empower manufacturers by allowing them to use smaller batteries, which will help in the effort to make smaller wearables and IoT products. This is why the chip maker is focusing on targeting these chips to cameras, smart plugs, access controls and home appliances.
Rockchip is not exactly one of the most popular chip makers around, but they do stand their ground in some markets. This technology may help them take their business to the next level. It all reads very well on paper, but we hope this technology can work as advertised when put into action, too.
The RKi6000 SoC launches in Q3 2015, so we may start seeing products sporting it relatively soon. For now, let’s just keep wasting our energy like there is no tomorrow!