Almost everyone who owns a smartphone would have noticed that whenever they stream videos or play games their device gets warm and starts to drain battery rapidly. Engineers claim that power amplifiers are to blame for this behavior and that these chips waste as much as 65 per cent of their energy. The professors Joel Dawson and David Perreault, through their startup Eta Devices claim to have solved this problem with a new power amplifier design.
The new technology, dubbed asymmetric multilevel outphasing [PDF], is basically a super fast electronic gearbox that would select the best possible voltage to send across the transistors that would minimize power consumption. This process is done as many as 20 million times per second.