Apple has recently taken out a patent for wirelessly charging, which has spawned rumors that it will be the game-changing tech delivered in the iPhone 7. It wouldn’t use a conduction pad, which has already been introduced but would be a truly wifi charge. You could sit your iPhone near your laptop and let it feed without the wire or the magnetic power pad. This type of charge is called resonance charging and while it’s similar to the magnetic induction charging (the power matt) in some ways, the biggest difference is the device can be further away from a power base to receive a charge.
Of course, Apple knows that when it takes out patents the public (read: Google) sees this, and over the years they’ve played a cat-and-mouse game with their rivals, taking out red herring patents that will take everyone off the scent of the real tech breakthrough they’re working on. Apple is in such a powerful position and doesn’t want to give their rivals any sort of lead time to catch up. Given the brand loyalty their customers have shown the secrecy almost seems pointless, but it’s probably all part of the game. People like intrigue as well, right? Makes the product seem that much cooler.
Wireless charging has long seemed set for mainstream adoption though many obstacles have laid in its way, mostly the typical pests like standardizations but also the ability to charge multiple devices at once. Apple has a way of knocking these barriers down by letting their devotees vote with their wallets which system makes the most sense (the one the iPhone uses).
Beyond the all-powerful smartphone, it’ll be interesting to see how medical and automotive devices are affected. There’s been a lot of activity and discovery, but only until iPhone gives its cue will the method of mainstream adoption be safely decided.
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