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Cutting the cable: Wireless charging becomes a reality

Lucas Mearian | Sept. 12, 2012
Imagine sitting down at work, plopping a mobile device on the desk and having it wirelessly charge itself while, at the same time, synchronizing new data to your PC.

According to WPC, there are 8.5 million Qi capable devices sold worldwide. The largest market for wireless charging is Japan, where it's almost impossible to purchase a mobile phone without the capability embedded in it, Treffers said.

Gartner analyst Ken Dulaney called the Qi standard "a strong, and sorely needed means for wireless charging."

Though several key vendors, including Apple and Samsung, have yet to announce support for the Qi Standard, Dulaney believes it already has the necessary backing to move forward.

According to Intel, an Ultrabook user could soon simply use WCT detection software on a PC to charge a nearby smartphone. Coupling takes place between the two devices and energy begins to seamlessly and wirelessly flow from the Ultrabook to the smartphone.

"Within an hour, you have recharged your smartphone sufficiently to make it through the afternoon. No more wires or chargers," Intel said.

The Qi specification is also aimed at technology used automotive systems to avoid interference with wireless systems like Bluetooth. The Qi standard also is expected to be adopted by wireless payment systems, combining powering and data transfer.

"The technology has improved to the point where it takes just about as long to charge your device wirelessly as it does with a cable," Dulaney said. "And combined with Bluetooth you really could see a day where you could give up the cables in your bag."



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