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This paper discusses optimizations for the power dissipation of RF front ends in portable wireless devices. A breakthrough in power dissipation can be achieved by simultaneously optimizing the antenna interface, circuits, and IC technology of such devices. A model that predicts the minimum power dissipation of a front end for both short-range and long-range connections will be introduced. Using these models, the impact of the antenna interface on the power dissipation will be assessed. Using two antennas with equal gain combining, a typical power dissipation reduction of 2.5 to 30 times can be achieved. Using high-impedance circuits for short-range systems in combination with silicon-on-anything technology, a further reduction of power dissipation by up to one order of magnitude can be realized.