The Wireless Power Consortium – Get Rid of the Power Cable too!

The Wireless Power Consortium is a cooperation of Asian, European and American companies from different industries, works on setting the international standard for interoperable wireless charging. Why do we still need to plug the power cable in our phones and gadgets? Everything else is wireless.

Today each product comes with its own wireless charger. We got rid of the last wire, but created a jungle of incompatible charging stations.  The consortium demands that the charging station will work with products from many companies, and will work with next year’s products as well.

The Wireless Power Consortium will set an international standard for compatible wireless charging stations. Compatible products will be recognized by a logo. Phones, cameras, remote controls, and all mobile electronics carrying the logo will work with all charging stations that carry the logo.

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The wireless power standard will have the same charging time as the current technology of wired chargers. It will meet the major regulatory international safety radiation and emissions standards. The Consortium will first establish an international standard for devices 5 watts and below, with an international standard for high power devices and equipment to follow.

Short distance power transmission is usually based on the principle of magnetic induction. With this technology, power is transferred only if the receiver is close to the transmitter. Short distance power transmission is used in many products. Toothbrushes, LED candles, remote controls, medical equipment, power tools, digital cameras and phones.

The technology for long distance power transfer is still in its infancy. If power is transmitted over a distance of more than a couple of centimeters, only a small part of the transmitted power will find its way into your phone, and the rest is wasted in the environment. That’s why the existing products are based on proximity power only.

The Consortium members include Texas Instruments, National Semiconductor, Nokia, Philips, Olympus, Sanyo, Duracell, Energizer, Samsung Electronics, ST-Ericsson, etc..

The Wireless Power Consortium has chosen the logo “Qi” (pronounced “chee”, meaning “vital energy” in Chinese philosophy – an intangible flow of power). Qi is the sign of interoperability between power transmitters and power receivers. A Qi receiver will work with all Qi transmitters.

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