Shares of Energous (WATT 17.10, +8.16) have nearly doubled in price, making for some early noise during an otherwise quiet session. Today's spike has helped the stock narrow its year-to-date loss to 1.5%.
Today's surge comes after the Federal Communications Commission certified Energous' WattUp Mid Field transmitter, which allows for wireless battery charging at a distance.
Android devices have offered inductive charging for more than five years and the latest line of Apple iPhones also comes equipped with Qi inductive charging, which is being described as "wireless charging" for marketing purposes, but isn't entirely so, considering devices need to be placed directly on a small charging pad. While the need to connect the phone to a charger was removed, the user still had to place the device on a pad, which meant only one tiny step was removed from the charging process. The lack of a significant increase in convenience contributed to limited adoption of inductive charging.
The FCC approval of Energous' transmitter opens the door to true wireless charging, though the device will need to remain within 15 feet of the charging transmitter. To receive approval Energous had to prove that electricity sent through its radio transmitter doesn't exceed the phone's ability to receive a charge and doesn't interfere with medical devices.
Commenting on the approval, Energous CEO Stephen Rizzone said the FCC's decision represents a historic day in human use of radio waves.