Ran across this article today over at Engadget about a French startup called Wysips that has developed a transparent photovoltaic film, basically generating power from light, which could theoretically turn your smartphone’s touchscreen into a self-sufficient, solar charger. The film would be applied directly to the screen, below the capacitive layer, so no effect on touch performance. There are some issues with clarity but the developers are said to be working through it. May not generate enough power to keep a smartphone perpetually charged but it could easily extend the capacity of your battery without adding any weight or bulk.

The firm is in the process of locking up deals with suppliers, manufacturers and carriers, which sounds like a very good thing. The first commercial devices are expected to hit in 2012. Good stuff. You can read the whole article here.


  1. I think it would be better placed on the rear panel than the screen. The only time I have my phone out of my pocket is when I’m using it with the majority of the time next to my head. I don’t think I want to leave my phone baking in the sun to get a little extra juice…can’t imagine it would be good for your battery to have all the added heat either.

  2. It will work with natural or artificial light, so unless you spend all your time in a cave there will be some incremental benefit. Not really intended to fully charge your phone, but could easily add 20-50% to your existing charge. Like having an extended battery. I played around with photovoltaic cells from Radio Shack a few years back and was amazed at how much energy they absorbed by simply holding them up to office lighting.

  3. What a great idea! Going to be interesting when this technology is used as a selling point for phones.

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