Samsung has been making various vague noises about smart clothing for a while now (opens in new tab), but a new patent spotted by LetsGoDigital (opens in new tab) suggests they're ready to get serious about producing some tech-enabled threads that consumers can actually buy.
Specifically, the patent details a system whereby smart clothing can be powered by the movements of whoever is wearing it - so you could have a skiing jacket that heats up as you go downhill, for example, or a tshirt that charges up your phone as you go about your daily business.
The diagrams included in the patent show multiple sensors spread out across multiple parts of the clothing - the idea can apparently be applied in whatever kind of garment is needed, including jackets, trousers, hats, gloves and shoes.
Having energy produced by your clothes and your movements is certainly one way of increasing the battery life you're going to get between charges, assuming there's some way of hooking the two together. But the idea could also be useful out in the wilderness, a long way from a power source.
The usual patent caveats apply: these filings only represent ideas that companies are exploring, and there's no guarantee that something like this will ever see the light of day. However, it does show that Samsung is at least thinking about joining the smart clothing market in a seriously energy efficient way.
Samsung actually applied for this patent in Korea last year, so it's possible the tech is already at an advanced stage - we might even see some of it at CES 2018 in January. We'll be on the show floor in Las Vegas, ready to try on anything Samsung has to show.