Oppo introduces 100% battery-free AirTags: how it works

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Oppo presents a very promising prototype of the Oppo Zero-Power Tag, a tracker similar to the Apple AirTag, but that works without a battery.

The Oppo group is strongly present at MWC 2023 to present various products: its Oppo Air Glass 2 glasses, or the OnePlus Tab and OnePlus 11 Concept, from its premium brand. The firm also presents the prototype of a very promising technology, Oppo Zero-Power Tag.

What is it for ?

Like Apple’s AirTags, Oppo’s solution allows you to geolocate your objects: a backpack, a coat, or even your luggage. At the moment, the Zero-Power label remains ” bulky for an accessory of this category, but Oppo promises to miniaturize its technology to turn it into a kind of label that you can stick wherever you want.

The manufacturer does not stop there and also promises to be able to integrate additional sensors to offer other services in addition to location. On-site teams were demonstrating a temperature sensor.

Here, the firm does not hide that it is targeting applications for companies and, in particular, it mentioned the field of agriculture with the idea of ​​passively capturing the level of humidity in addition to the temperature.

How does it work ?

No, Oppo couldn’t invent free energy or perpetual motion. To power your device, Oppo will actually reuse heat, light, and electromagnetic waves from 4G LTE, 5G NR-Light (Redcap), Wi-Fi, or even future 6G (yes, ya).

The recovery of these waves into electrical energy makes it possible to power the very low consumption processor of the object and the sensors present (location, temperature, humidity, etc.). Oppo also uses a system of ” repetition » (backscatter). This consists of receiving the environmental waves, modifying the signal and using the reflection from the surface to send them back, enough to transmit a signal, but without using an active transmitter that would consume too much power for this device. Between the low consumption processor, the energy harvesting and the reflection of the waves to transmit the signal, Oppo believes that it has solved the equation of an electronic object that works without a battery.

This is one of the strengths of this technology that the brand really highlights beyond simple energy savings. The system does not use batteries that are known to be so environmentally costly to produce.

Oppo isn’t moving forward to reveal a release date, but has told us about developing a marketable product by 2024/2025.

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