wireless charger Stories November 9, 2015

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When I wrote last week’s opinion piece on five hardware lessons Apple could learn from Android manufacturers, a few of you wondered why I hadn’t added wireless charging to the list.

Those who know me might be especially surprised. I hate cables, and indeed went to the trouble of having a bespoke desk made so that cables could be rendered almost invisible. I’ve also been known to favor hi-tech approaches over low-tech ones just because I’m a gadget guy, so why wasn’t I calling on Apple to introduce wireless charging … ?  expand full story

wireless charger Stories April 17, 2015

As a founding member of the Wires Are Evil club, I’ve been waiting impatiently for wide-area wireless charging, where any device on a desk or within a certain area of a room is wirelessly charged. That still seems a way off yet.

A good halfway house would be inductive charging powerful enough to work through the thickness of a desk, so your charging pads sit out of sight on the underside of the desk and your devices charge as soon as you put them down on the right place on the desk. Sadly today’s wireless charging standards are too weedy to work through even the thinnest of desks.

If you want wireless charging today, then, you’re going to have to have a visible wire to a charging pad, and place your device on that. Apple has so far limited wireless charging to the Apple Watch, but if you want it for your iPhone, you can buy a wireless charging case that allows you to use any compatible wireless charging pad. We’ve reviewed a number of these over the years, and I thought it was about time to try one for the iPhone 6

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The best 4K & 5K displays for Mac

wireless charger Stories June 4, 2014

Future Macs could lose the cables as Intel demos next-generation wireless charging, docking & displays

If you’re like me and love technology but hate the rats nest of cables it requires, we could be in for some good news. Intel has demonstrated a system that could be incorporated into future computers that allows wireless connectivity for power, displays, and connection to accessories like external drives.

Wireless charging is nothing new, of course, but existing systems are something of a mess. They rely on inductive charging, which is ultra-short range and only suited to low-power devices like smartphones, and there are several competing and incompatible systems in use.

The new system demo’d by Intel uses magnetic resonance charging, which can cope with the power demands of laptops, and works through up to two inches of wood – meaning that the charging plate can be hidden out of sight under a desk. The same charging plate can also charge multiple devices simultaneously, so a single installation under your desk could potentially power your Mac, iPad, iPhone and wireless headset.

For wireless connection to displays and accessories, Intel uses the Wireless Gigabit Alliance system WiGig, which allows speeds of up to 7Gbps over a distance of a few feet – good enough for a completely wireless desk, and rendering my home-brewed iDesk redundant.

The technology will be supported by Skylake, a chip that is currently two generations down the road, and likely to first appear in laptops in 2016. Apple has not yet signed-up, but Asus, Dell, Fujitsu, Lenovo, Logitech, Panasonic and Toshiba are all on board, so it is likely just a matter of time.

(Via CNET)

wireless charger Stories October 13, 2013

For the last few weeks, I’ve been testing out both the RAVPower Wireless Charger and the xRobot Power Bank, two unique takes on the conventional way to charge your devices. While both products come from the same family, their functionality couldn’t be farther apart. Let’s take a look how both worked.

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wireless charger Stories March 14, 2013

However unlikely—the United States Patent and Trademark office today published an Apple patent application that details a system of inductively charging an iPad through the Smart Cover. The idea is that rather than plugging in the iPad, the Smart Cover would include an inductive power transmitter that would allow it to pair with an inductive power transceiver embedded into the iPad. The result is the Smart Cover would become a wireless charging station, connecting to an external power source, and allowing you to power your iPad in various positions. Apple also explained that it could use “ambient power gathering devices, such as solar cells, can be used to gather ambient power (such as sunlight) to be stored internally in the flap for later inductive transfer.”

A method for wireless powering a tablet device, comprising: determining if a protective cover is in a closed configuration with respect to the tablet device; enabling a wireless power receiver circuit in the tablet device when it is determined that the protective cover is in the closed configuration with respect to the tablet device; and wirelessly receiving power from a wireless power transmitter associated with the protective cover.

Apple described the advanced Smart Cover as including multiple power transmitters to allow the iPad to charge even when using the case, for example, as a stand to prop up the device. Alternatively, the cover could continue charging the device when in the closed position or when an iPad is placed on top: expand full story

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