Waiting for battery innovation is like waiting for Godot

Sombit Mishra

Waiting for GodotSamuel Beckett's Waiting for Godot is the story of two men, Vladimir and Estragon, who wait endlessly for a guy named Godot.  They only know about Godot by reputation but insist they must wait until he arrives.  In the meantime, they contemplate how to keep themselves busy--should they sleep, exercise, try on hats, etc.--but ultimately they end up doing nothing.  Oh, and Godot never comes.  

In the world of wearable computing, battery innovation is the Godot that everyone seems to be waiting for.  Jawbone CEO Hosain Rahman said this week, "All this wearable stuff is constrained by battery technology. It's not a computing problem."

Rahman's statement isn't only generic, it's incorrect.  At QMedic, we have developed computing advancements to extend battery life.  QMedic's wearable device lasts over a year without recharge while sampling continuously.  Although we agree that improvements in battery technology would make a difference, we are not holding our breath for these improvements to come in the next few years.  

It may be 10-15 years before we get a true breakthrough in batteries.  Do we really want to wait that long for Godot?  He's not as necessary as you might think...