What can we learn from deployments of Tesla charging stations?

Aug. 2019

Several years ago, a friend of mine purchased a Tesla. His wife said: “OK, if that’s your only mid-life crisis, I agree with this purchase”.

But she had another concern – the charging stations. Yes, they would have a charging station at home, but at that time there were not many public charging stations. This would limit the use of the Tesla to destinations that are not too far from home so that they could always charge.

Fast forward a few years, and charging stations are prevalent. At the end of 2018, there were over 20,000 charging stations in the US. The long trips away from home are now possible.

What can we learn about long-range wireless charging from the Tesla story?

I believe this shows us that the first successful applications of long-range wireless charging will be those where the charged devices remain mostly in the same general location.

Consider this: imagine I sold you a home security system that is wirelessly charged. You never need to replace batteries and the devices can have high-end features without a power cord. As part of the system, you’d get a long-range wireless charger from Wi-Charge and you have a complete solution. You might not care whether your next-door neighbor or your family members have one as well. Your devices get charged where you need them to be charged.

If, on the other hand, I gave you a mobile phone with an embedded Wi-Charge receiver. You’d be very excited, but then you’d ask: are there Wi-Charge power sources at Starbucks? At the airport? This is because you want to use your phone in very many places. Getting all these power transmitters installed is a longer effort, just like installing Tesla charging stations took time.

I need to check back with my friend regarding his mid-life crisis.