ClearOne Receives Patent for PoE Method That Eliminates 100-Meter Distance Constraint

clearonepattenClearOne 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.

The technology disclosed in this patent shows benefits for at least two applications of note. First, it’s 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. ClearOne says the 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.

Second, the 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 the 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 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 says it’s pursuing additional technological advancements and intellectual property in this 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 patent portfolio, which covers multiple new technologies in the fields of audio and video processing, audio and video streaming and innovative communication technologies.

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