Chances are you will have heard of wireless charging. But what exactly is it, and how does it work?
Basically, wireless charging does ‘what it says on the tin’ – it’s a way of charging your device without the hassle of having to fiddle around with USB ends and tangled cables! Here is the TechFly guide to all you need to know about wirelessly charging your phone.[divider]How it works[/divider]
In a nutshell, wireless charging works using magnets. Basically, two coils – one in the charging plate and one in the device – transfer energy using an electromagnetic field.
It may all sound very scientific and complex, but in reality all you need are two pieces of hardware with compatible technology (Nokia and Google has selected the Qi standard, for example). Then all you need to do is place the device on the charging pad and then, as if by magic, the phone should start charging!
Now, the name is slightly misleading as it isn’t truly wireless. There still needs to be a cable to plug into the mains power supply, but the name comes from the lack of connection between the charger and the device.
Furthermore, you could charge your device with batteries for a truly wire-free experience, although this is more inefficient and could be seen as a waste when using a wire is just as useful.
Wireless charging is becoming increasingly commonplace among smartphones. For instance, many Nokia Lumia phones either have wireless charging built in, or available as an official case add on. Should you own a different phone, plenty of third party companies have cases/backs/battery replacements and pads.[divider]Pros and Cons[/divider]
There are obvious benefits to having a wirelessly charging phone – the immediate one being the lack of hassle with inserting a USB cable every time you want to charge it. Along with this comes less use of the connectors in the USB socket, which can be protected or covered up – saving general wear and tear of the hardware.
Besides use within mobile phones, wireless technology has also had a big impact on other areas of technological life. In medicine, for example, wireless charging can be used to charge medical devices underneath the skin, limiting the chances of infection that come with using a wire.
Having said that, there are disadvantages to the technology too. For one thing, it simply isn’t as efficient or fast as USB cable charging, and there tends to be a lot of wasted heat. Additionally, there isn’t one wireless charging standard, which means your device may not be compatible with a friend’s hardware.[divider]The future of wireless charging[/divider]
For now, it’s mainly just small devices that can be charged wirelessly, such as toothbrushes and phones. But in the near future, we can expect to see the technology expanded to laptops, and even entire desks being made of charging material – so you’ll be able to simply pop down your device and it’ll charge for as long as it’s on the desk.
To push the possibilities even further, why not make the entire floor out of it? With the range of the charging field expanded, everything will be charged no matter where it is, whether it’s on a desk or in a bag or pocket.
Even further into the future, electric cars and trains could be powered by cables underneath the road/tracks, so you won’t have to charge your car before work every night!
The potential of wireless charging, as these examples show, is almost endless, and could go a long way to help streamline our lives and the ways in which we connect with our technology.
So, there you have it. The lowdown on all things wireless.
Are you a big fan of wireless charging? Are there particular directions you’re hoping wireless technology will move in for the future? You can voice your thoughts by tweeting us @TechFlyOfficial.
Thanks to Wireless Phone Chargers for sponsoring this article.