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Staying Connected – The Emergence of Wireless Charging Technology

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Staying connected in the modern world is essential. Even in the case of wireless technology, where you’re not ‘physically’ connected, it’s essential to remain technically (both literally and figuratively) connected. (What do you mean? That previous statement isn’t confusing; it makes total sense!) Ok, here it is again: You no longer need to plug your smartphone in to the mains for it to charge the battery; wireless phone charging for smartphones, tablets, and other mobile devices is revolutionising the way we charge our technology. And we couldn’t be happier; no more tangled or ripped cords. No more ‘Dude, where’s my cord?’ or borrowing/stealing someone else’s power cord to keep your smartphone alive and pining. Simply put your smartphone on a charging station and ‘thar she charges’. Here’s how it works and what wireless charging technology is must have for your overworked tech-worn digits.

WHAT IS WIRELESS CHARGING?

Wireless charging works on the principle of electromagnetic induction. An electrical current in one part of the charger creates a magnetic field, which in turn creates a voltage – and that voltage powers your phone, making the use of wires for this purpose obsolete. Simply place your smartphone on the charging unit and see your battery power soar.

Ok, so plugging your smartphone in to the mains isn’t exactly hard work, but in the mobile industry it’s all about comfort and ease of use. And yes, granted, you’re still having to place your smartphone in a charging station, but in the mobile market usability is everything, and picking up your smartphone from a docking station is easier and more comfortable than fiddling around with power cords.

THE PLAYERS

Samsung, Nokia, and Sony are already on the wireless charging bandwagon; Apple, arguable the biggest trendsetter, is the odd one out. Apple hasn’t yet adopted wireless charging; it’s an option that exists solely on Android devices. As for Apple, opinions vary, but some industry commentators think that the company’s fence-sitting approach is because they’re waiting to see which of the wireless charging technologies – Qi, Rezence or Powermat – proves its staying power. So the company that can make the biggest difference to people’s buying habits has yet to embrace wireless charging on any of its products. Even their latest smartphones, the iPhone 6 and 6+, don’t have the ability to charge with anything other than the cable they come with. Bummer.

THE GAME

Qi, Rezence and Powermat are the trio of heavy hitters in the wireless charging market. Understanding which system works on which device is often like trying to decipher Chinese maths: it’s a confusing, cross-wired fight for dominance. But it’s certainly a fight worth winning, because according to a recent survey, the wireless charging market will be worth $22.25 billion By 2022, up from $1.87 billion in 2014. The survey sees a shift away from entangling wires and a scarcity of electric sockets in public places and an increasing move towards charging pads. Wireless technology is safer and cleaner than wired connections, so the survey suggest emerging adopters to be the healthcare industry and the military, which will fuel wireless power’s growing popularity. This popularity may be dampened by competing companies grappling for dominance, but eventually, like HD DVD bowing out to Blu-ray, one standard will no doubt emerge triumphant and contribute to widespread adoption by mainstream consumers.

THE ACCESSORIES

There’s already a lot of wireless charging accessories available. If you’re in to what’s trending at the moment, check out the Mophie case, which is compatible with Apple devices. This case provides the wireless charging technology that the iPhone 6 doesn’t have. That’s pretty cool, and the case isn’t bulky but stylish and functional.

When your smartphone is too tired to stand upright anymore, put it in a standing pad to replenish and recharge. The fast and effective wireless phone charger by Vinsic is a standing pad that is compatible with the Samsung S6 Edge Plus, Nokia Lumia, Nexus 6 LG, and G2 Moto Droid.

Samsung’s 5v Wireless Charge Pad is well-designed and easy to use. It has a circular rubber ridge that holds your device in place while it charges. A LED cover glows to let you know if your Qi-compatible phone is properly placed or needs to be repositioned.

One of the most compact and fastest wireless charge pads on the market is Choetech’s Fast Charger. It has 10v output, so it charges twice as fast as the standard 5v wireless chargers. A light around the bottom half of the charger glows blue when it’s charging at 5v and green when a compatible device charges at 10v.

Wireless charging is still in its infancy but it’s growing up fast. We hope that Apple gets on board and adds to the creative mix to initiate greater competitive development between the competing brands, which will eventually give us, the end users, the all-mighty consumers, one mainstream easy-to-use wireless charging platform available across all brands and devices. One system to rule them all. (Rumours are that the upcoming iPhone 7 will be fitted for wireless charging.)

For info on all the latest gadgets and technology news, check out Repair Express’s blog. And for all repairs and warranties you’ll ever need for your smartphones, tables, laptops, and all other electronic devices, look no further because you’ve found us.

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