7 Common Wireless Design Challenges in Ergonomic Wearables

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6. Product housing in close vicinity to antennas

The beauty of wearables comes from how they efficiently use space, but this means components are packed in to maximise efficiency. This can pose a problem for wireless design, as metallic components, LCDs, batteries and more can prevent effective wireless transmissions. At its worse, this can affect wireless performance to such an extent that the final design doesn’t function.

Review how components will interact with your antennas transmission signals. With an embedded wireless solution, there will inevitably be some form of frequency shifting in the presence of metal parts. However, you can tune your antenna optimally by testing your design – or by consulting Antenova, as we provide free design support for all Antenova antennas.

7. Compacted circuit boards with metallic and magnetised components present

The nature of wearables can make it impossible to avoid metallic and magnetised components within the circuitry of the device. Unfortunately, these components become transistors when subject to RF signals.

Make sure you are prepared for how different antennas will respond to the other components on your circuit board. Flexible circuit boards may be a more suitable option, improving ergonomics while allowing for flexible sheltered antennas.

Making elegant and efficient wearables

Wireless performance is an essential part of wearable design: if they can’t connect, then they’re no more than a useless accessory. All too often, the implications on your wireless performance are considered too late – wireless solutions can be seen getting ‘shoehorned’ into wearables. Rarely, if ever, does this approach work.

If designers are aware of how ergonomics and wireless interrelate early on, innovative solutions utilising the sheer range of antennas can be sought out—elegance and efficiency of design will then spur each other on.

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