howtogeek — 2013-05-06T06:42:01-04:00 — #1
Originally published at: http://www.howtogeek.com/162483/no-more-cables-how-wireless-charging-works-and-how-you-can-use-it-today/
Wireless charging is one of many new features appearing in the latest smartphones, from Google’s Nexus 4 and Samsung’s Galaxy S4 to Nokia’s Lumia 920. There are even cases that add wireless charging capabilities to Apple’s iPhone 5.
bobby_phoenix — 2013-05-06T09:50:44-04:00 — #2
"Of course, the wireless charger itself must still be plugged into the wall. The requirement for a separate device that must be plugged into the wall has led Apple’s Phil Schiller to argue that wireless charging “is actually, for most situations, more complicated” — which is why the iPhone hasn’t adopted wireless charging." I agree with this 100%. I'm a die hard Android fan, but every time someone mentions "wireless charging" I cringe with a slight chuckle. If you have to put the device down on something to charge then it's not wireless charging. The only difference between this "wireless charging" and normal charging is you just don't have to push anything into the phone to connect. If that is considered wireless charging then my Nexus One had wireless charging in 2010 because I had the dock which you just set the Nexus One on, and it charged it. No plugging in the USB, or having to connect anything. It automatically connected to the charger via two connectors at the bottom of the phone. Nothing was ever plugged into each other. "Wireless charging" is when you can sit on your couch, and the phone is charging from being within a certain range of the wall charger or desk charger (Maybe 6 feet). It's as simple as that.
iszi — 2013-05-06T10:03:40-04:00 — #3
If you ever get a device with wireless charging, and use that feature for awhile, you'll quickly learn that it's a lot more awesome than it seems. I love that I don't have to worry about fiddling with any plugs or docking connections on my Lumia 920 - just plop it on the charger and it's set.
Yes, the phone was "plugged in" to the docking port. Could you just lay the phone on the docking port carelessly and have it charge? Try connecting it at arbitrary angles? Would it charge if it was the tiniest bit out of alignment, or if there was just a little gap (or, heaven forbid, corrosion) between the contacts? No. That's the beauty of wireless charging. You don't have to fiddle with anything. There's no contacts to line up just so, or worry about oxidizing from exposure. You just sit the device down on the charger however you like and (as Appple is fond of saying) it just works.
bilalx2 — 2013-05-06T10:20:30-04:00 — #4
I would love the day when I don't have to worry about charging my DEVICE. Like WiFi it gets charged whenever it is in range of the charger.
socksmusicalcat — 2013-05-06T10:30:44-04:00 — #5
"Things are very much in flux at the moment."
I see what you did there.
iszi — 2013-05-06T11:07:02-04:00 — #6
I think I remember reading an article about people who are trying to develop tech that will charge off of pre-existing ambient RF noise.
lockecj — 2013-05-06T13:51:01-04:00 — #8
Well, technically speaking, it is wireless. Inductive charging is probably more accurate, but I always figured they chose wireless because it's a more marketable term.
I think this will all get more interesting once there are fewer standards, and we have things like desks/tables/counter tops/couches that act as a power surface. There were some demos a few years ago at CES that showed using a blender that was powered through the counter top and an EV that was charged through the garage floor.
Actually, I think the Nexus One had Pogo Pins, which are very cool, but are sort of the opposite of wireless.
tradux — 2013-05-06T14:32:51-04:00 — #9
Is induction picked up by a coil?
A coil would add weight, and consume more copper; two disadvantages.
The charging pad would add weight, copper, and volume; three.
My old 2001 thumbwheel Sony charged in a neat-fit cradle.
artkennedy1 — 2013-05-06T17:07:40-04:00 — #10
Another way to waste energy. What is the efficiency factor?
oldwizard — 2013-05-06T18:58:43-04:00 — #11
How about us old geezers who have pacemakers that can be reset or even destroyed by magnetic fields? If the magnetic fields from the cellphone charges are strong enough they could prove very dangerous for a substantial number of people. Or am I missing something?
iszi — 2013-05-06T19:02:39-04:00 — #12
I think they would include a REALLY BIG WARNING if such things were known to happen - and I didn't notice one on mine. That said, I wouldn't go holding an active Qi charger right up against my grandfather's chest any time soon, either.
2noob2btrue — 2013-05-07T02:36:06-04:00 — #13
I've used wireless charging on my electric toothbrush for the last 7 years or so. I've nothing negative to say about it, magnetic induction seems the optimal charging choice for all things which become wet on a regular basis.
Not sure how applicable that is to cell phones though.
penguinjeff — 2013-05-07T15:51:18-04:00 — #14
One benefit I see not mentioned here would be no exposed metal to the outside to corrosion. You could develop a sealed phone with no exposed metal.
A detriment that wasn't mentioned is efficiency. Physics says it has to be less efficient.
My Tesla Coil can light a florescent light up to 4 feet away. All touch surfaces become unusable around it(have to reboot phones afterwards). I really need to make a video of mine. I have so many things I did different than most that I think it might be useful information.
spockfive — 2013-05-08T12:16:57-04:00 — #15
Hmmm I'm still wating for WiTricity's solutions.
jonafun — 2013-06-04T18:02:34-04:00 — #16
The clear primary benefits IMHO to "wireless charging" (maybe it should be called "pad charging") are:
1) Multiple devices charging on one pad at the same time. This way I've reduced my cords and necessary outlets from four or five down to one, and to boot I can keep everything in one spot. If my wife and I can put both of our phones and both of our tablets in one spot, and they will all charge without having to even plug each individual one in, this alone is huge.
2) No wear on charging ports or cords from the repeated action of plugging in and unplugging.
3) And finally, if the tech becomes common enough and places like coffee shops and hotels are making charging pads readily available, that means no more lugging around and losing chargers.
bobro — 2013-06-13T05:49:02-04:00 — #17
like it says this isn't really Wireless charging this is induction charging. I like how easy it is, the QI charger I got cost £20 which is cheaper than a cradle, there is a lil green LED on it so at night I can roll over and see where I plonk my phone, it turns blue to tell me its on the mat and charging (only down side there is it then does a really loud beep often waking up my sleeping gf!) once charged the led is back green and stops charging. simple.
I hope the standards war doesn't get too silly, I am even confused at how it causes problems. a coil of wire is a coil of wire creating a magnetic field, how can making a different coil make a different magnetic field that is so different and why do that just to stuff over the consumer?
jolene — 2013-06-25T17:32:23-04:00 — #18
Kirk H&J Corp has a new patented technology that uses the conductive wireless charging standard. Their iNPOFi wireless charging system just launched recently. The system consists of a charging board and phone case/cover. This charging board, like others, does require to be plugged into a power source either through USB or wall unit. However, the soon to be launched is their battery-pack portable charger, the iNPOFi Mobile Wireless Charger (MWC) which will not be required to be plugged into a power source to charge your phone. These charging boards are light-weight and slim. Because there are no coils, you can lay your phone on the charging board any way to start a charge. They also do not emit any radiation as does the Qi and other wireless standards and the efficiency is higher (over 90%) than its competitors. They are working on setting this iNPOFi technology as the new wireless standard so soon there will be four wireless standards.
jolene — 2013-06-25T17:36:07-04:00 — #19
Kirk H&J Corp just launched their zero-radiation wireless charger, the iNPOFi wireless charging system.
oldwizard — 2013-06-25T18:49:00-04:00 — #20
Thanks for the info. That is very good news