Qualcomm’s Wireless Charging Tech Could Do The Trick For Metal-Bodied iPhones

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Qualcomm has announced that it had developed a technology, which will allow the metal body phone to charge wirelessly. Some, like the HTC One M9, are prevented from adopting wireless charing due to their metal bodies. Previously, that just meant you could leave keys or coins on the charging plate; with some software tweaks, it should mean phones hewn from metal that are still wireless charging compatible. But wireless chargers can be a lot more convenient: you don’t have to fumble with cables, risk scratching your phone when attempting to plug it in in the dark, and basically it makes charging your phone when it’s not in use a no-brainer. The technology, based on Qualcomm’s WiPower technology, is Rezence standard compliant.

Announcing the news, Steve Pazol, General Manager of Wireless Charging, Qualcomm Incorporated said, “Building a wireless charging solution into devices with metal exteriors is a significant step for moving the entire industry forward”. Additionally, the technology enables simultaneous charging of multiple devices with different power requirements while using Bluetooth Smart to minimize hardware requirements.

That capability is possible thanks to the higher frequency used by Rezence, which is more tolerant of metal objects in the charging field.

Qualcomm confirmed that the patent for designing a device that can charge through a metal back cover, along with the full suite of WiPower reference designs are available to WiPower licensees. It will be interesting to see if some of them abandon the Qi charging that they have been using for years and jump ship to the Rezence standard. “Today, more device manufacturers are choosing to utilize metal alloys in their product designs to provide greater structural support and, of course, aesthetics”. Further, WiPower can charge devices that require as much as 22 watts at speeds that match or exceed those of other wireless charging technologies, according to Qualcomm.

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