Is it a bird, is it a plane, nope. Say hello to graphene! It’s tougher than Superman.
Every now and then, something comes along that’s a complete game-changer in the world of tech. Graphene is just that. Despite being available for more than a decade, it’s only now that developers are finding ways to use this so-called ‘wonder material.’
At last month’s Mobile World Congress (MWC), there was an array of exciting new tech pieces and developments that wouldn’t be possible without graphene. So, if this is the first you’re hearing of the stuff, here’s what you need to know.
So, What Is Graphene?
You might think that the name sounds pretty familiar and there’s a good reason for that.
Yes, graphene is a material that’s extracted from graphite. It consists of carbon atoms, which are packed into a honeycomb structure. The 2D material has a number of mind-blowing properties, including being as strong as steel, flexible, and super thin.
Interestingly enough, researchers were trying to perfect the art of extracting this material for a number of years, before they finally succeeded back in 2004. Since then, tech geniuses have been looking at the different ways that we may be able to use this new material in our modern-day gadgets.
The Future of Smartphones
Needless to say, one of the areas in which developers are just dying to use graphene is the world of smartphones.
In fact, this material has been used for several minor things in recent years that you may not know about. However, developers have been looking into ways in which the wonder material could change smartphones forever. Screens, batteries, phone cases, imagine that.
There’s been a whole load of chit-chat when it comes to bendable phones, but it doesn’t take a genius to see that there’s potential here. The fact that graphene is at once bendable and strong, means that it could well make the perfect material for new-age smartphones.
It is thought that this type of material could be used for antennas or displays, which would mean some seriously radical changes.
It’s 2018 and we all want super-fast charging phones. Getting up to 50% in 30 minutes is not enough. We want more. Much more. Luckily, this is yet another area in which graphene may be able to help.
One of the major things that researchers are looking into is how this material can help improve phone batteries.
Including graphene in battery units could help to boost their power and performance. However, there’s another, more exciting property that this material could well have.
It could also make the transfer of energy – between the charger and battery – much, much quicker than ever before. While the true capabilities here are unknown, researchers believe that this could lead to a charging time of just seven seconds. Can you imagine?!
Forget 3G and 4G… Graphene could also be used to bring a new tech to town. Yes, many developers also believe that the material could be harnessed to create a brand new 5G technology that could be used in future smartphones.
In fact, Ericsson used the material to create their very own 5G demo as part of the MWC last month. It seems that there is no limit to what this exciting material can do!