Wireless charging has been around for a while, believe it or not.
Wireless charging, or simply “wireless power transfer,” is the ability to transmit electricity through the air by creating a magnetic field between two coil circuits, a transmitter, and a receiver.
This article will explain in detail a few topics related to wireless charging systems. We dive deeper into what wireless charging is, how wireless charging systems work, types of wireless charging standards, wireless charging pads, and more.
How does wireless charging work?
Wireless charging is the transfer of electricity from a power outlet to a remote device without directly connecting a cable to a device through electromagnetic induction.
Wireless charging, in simple terms, involves two devices: a power transmitting pad and a receiver.
A power transmitting pad, or wireless charging pad, can come with a compatible device or be bought separately. The receiver is commonly built inside devices with wireless charging support, like smartphones. However, some devices have the receiver outside in the form of a case attached to the phone.
The charger uses an induction coil to create an electromagnetic field. The receiver “receives” this electromagnetic field via a receiver coil. The coil converts the electromagnetic field back into direct electricity, which is used to charge the battery.
However, not every wireless charging pad can charge every device with such support. Wireless charging has several standards. Below are the types of wireless charging standards:
Types of wireless charging standards
Three different wireless charging standards exist on the market depending on the maker of the charging specifications. There are three mainstream companies with proprietary charging standards.
These include The Alliance for Wireless Power (A4WP), the Power Matters Alliance (PMA), and the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC).
Based on these, there are three different wireless charging standards;
- Qi (pronounced “chee”)
Among the three, Qi is the main wireless charging standard, which is increasingly being used across industries.
1.) Qi Wireless charging standard
Qi is a standard wireless electro-magnetic power transmission maintained and promoted by the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC).
WPC aims to standardize wireless charging across all devices in the same way that USB and Bluetooth standards standardized data transmission across all devices.
Wireless chargers rely on magnetic induction or magnetic resonance to transmit energy.
A device that is Qi-certified is tested by the Wireless Power Consortium for safety, effectiveness, and compatibility.
Qi-certified devices must also operate from 0-30 watts, pass temperature tests, comply with FOD standards and be compatible with all other QI-certified devices.
Qi Compatible Devices
Being a mainstream charging standard, many devices coming out are Qi-compatible. Example of Qi compatible devices include; Fire HD 8 plus, iPhone 12 series, iPhone 11 series, and iPhone X.
There are lots of Qi compatible wireless charging pads on the market.
The best Qi compatible charges include:
RAVPower Wireless Charging Stand (RP-PC069), RAVPower Magnetic Wireless Charger (RP-WC012) and Anker PowerWave Base Pad
2.) Powermat (PMA) Wireless charging standard
Powermat is set to use magnetic induction to transfer energy between a transmitter and a receiver,
enabled smartphones can be charged by placing the gadgets on three charging spot locations:
- Outside Woolworths,
- Outside Output,
- Outside Target.
How to use
1. Download the app to start charging your phone.
2. Use a ring if your phone doesn’t have an enhanced wireless charging, inbuilt wireless charging battery.
3. Place your phone on the charging spot and tap to start charge.
Qi Compatible devices
- Samsung Galaxy S10, Galaxy S10+, and Galaxy S10e
- Samsung Galaxy Note 9
- Samsung Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+
- LG G8 ThinQ, G8s ThinQ, and V50
- LG G7 ThinQ and LG V40 ThinQ
- Sony Xperia XZ3 and Sony Xperia XZ2
- Nokia 9 PureView
- Google Pixel 3 and Pixel 3XL
- Huawei Mate 20 Pro
- Xiaomi Mi 9 and Mi 9 Explorer
3.) AirFuel Wireless charging standard
It uses a radio frequency transmitter and a receiver to pick up Rf energy and convert it to power. It provides low power at certain distances ranging from a few centimeters to a meter, delivering true spatial freedom.
Air Fuel has created universal standards for magnetic resonance and Rf to ensure that the widest range of devices can be powered without a plugin. It aims to establish a seamless ability to exchange energy easily global eco-system.
Powermat Compatible devices
- Humavox wireless headphones /headsets and earbuds
- Dell 2 in 1 latitude laptop
- Order furniture and Uwood stores
- Energous watt up transmitters
The best wireless charging pads
While there are many great wireless charging pads for Android and iPhones, maximum charging speeds can be limited to compatibility. See, while buying a 65W wireless charging brick sounds attractive, an iPhone is capped at 15 watts.
So although the charging pad is powerful, you’ll be limited to charging speeds your device supports. And worse, the maximum supported charging speeds often requires a proprietary charger.
So before you resort to buy a third-party wireless charging pad, consider compatibility first.
Related: How to wirelessly charge your iPhone
Wireless charging standards have been around for a couple of years. However, it is currently gaining momentum in consumer electronics as well as in other industries.
The car industry is also including wireless charging pads on new high-end vehicles, in addition to powerful infotainment systems that leverage technological advancements.
Qi becoming more popular than the other competing wireless charging standards.
There have been three charging standards which are Qi, Powermat and AirFuel which have come up to be popular in suiting different needs for manufacturers with different kinds of gadgets production.
Being a great revolutionary impact on technological advancement,
wireless charging standards are gradually advancing into new technology, many of the manufacturers and creators of electrical gadgets are starting to slowly accept wireless charging into their new inventions.