The basic design of an antenna hasn’t changed much in over 100 years, but a Utah-based start-up says its new technology could revolutionize the device—and maybe the cellphone industry, too. Speaking at Google’s recent Solve For X conference, ChamTech CEO Anthony Sutera described his firm’s “spray-on antenna,” made up of thousands of nanocapacitors, which increase signal strength. The antenna can be painted onto most surfaces: a wall, a tree, or clothing.
Testing it in the field, “we applied it to a tree,” Sutera told the conference, and got much better results than with a standard antenna. They sprayed it into an iPhone, and found it boosted the signal considerably, which could make dropped calls a thing of the past. It’s even been tested underwater, where traditional antennas don’t do very well, and showed good results. The potential applications are endless, from military to automotive uses. And ChamTech has found a receptive audience: customers are already lining up.