ClearOne (NASDAQ: CLRO), a global provider of audio and visual communication solutions, announced today that it has been awarded a strategic new patent relating to power transmission for Power over Ethernet (PoE) systems by the US Patent and Trademark Office. Awarded on April 14, 2020, the patent describes a simple method for providing power to multiple devices in a “daisy-chain” series connection using PoE. Use of the new method can eliminate the 100-meter Ethernet distance constraint for power and data transmission.
ClearOne’s innovative technology disclosed in this patent brings powerful benefits for at least two important applications. First, it is extremely useful for devices such as audio products including microphones and speakers, security and conferencing cameras, remote sensors, smart home technologies like thermostats and alarm systems, as well as computers and displays, all of which can be freely deployed anywhere within the reach of an Ethernet cable.
As an example of this application, ClearOne uses the patented technology in its professional audio products, including its beamforming microphone array ceiling tiles. The patented technology allows CONVERGE® Pro 2 DSP mixers to communicate with its beamforming microphone arrays at distances that greatly exceed traditional distance limitations for conferencing equipment, providing additional deployment options when compared with other Ethernet technologies like Audinate® Dante®.
Second, the patented technology is also useful for transmitting power only, without data, where access to electrical power outlets may be inconvenient or power outlet safety is a concern. For example, mobile device chargers, lighting, and other battery powered personal devices, and even toys can utilize this technology throughout the work or home environment because the patented method supplies power whether data is present or not.
An important added benefit of this application is the elimination of redundant electrical wiring and outlets to distribute power by using existing and common Ethernet cabling.
Prior PoE technology required separate cable runs, separate PoE power sources to each connected remote device, and suffered from distance limitations. ClearOne’s new patent discloses a simple, yet elegant method that intelligently enables a first PoE-powered device to forward a portion of the available power to the next PoE-powered device in the chain. ClearOne is pursuing additional technological advancements and intellectual property in this important area.
US patent number 10,620,678 entitled “System for Transmitting Power to a Remote PoE subsystem by forwarding PD Input Voltage” is part of ClearOne’s valuable patent portfolio covering multiple new technologies in the fields of audio and video processing, audio and video streaming, and innovative communication technologies. ClearOne’s patents reinforce and protect its position as a market leader and demonstrate ClearOne’s ongoing ability to develop cutting-edge technologies and products.