Wireless charging for iPhone and BlackBerry coming in October
6th Aug 2009 | 15:55
No wires in sight
Powermat will release a wireless charging mat that allows iPhones, iPods, BlackBerrys, Sony PSPs and Nintendo DSi's to power up without the need for proprietary connectors.
The new system sees a mat, costing £70, accompanied by various add ons and new covers for the electronics devices that mean all you need to do is chuck the device onto the pad to will wirelessly charge it.
An RFID chip on the device can be read by the mat, which will then supply power. When full, the mat drops back to standby mode, consuming a small amount of milliwatts of current, making it far more efficient than a standard mobile phone charger.
There's a portable version of the device as well, retailing at £70 when released, which features all the same elements of the larger version but folds down to a 100mm x 100mm x 35mm footprint with magnetic carrying case.
For the BlackBerry Powermat has developed a back cover with the wireless charge pad in, costing £30, but for the iPhone (which doesn't have a changeable cover) a silicon skin is used with the receiver, and costs £35, apparently due to Apple demanding royalties for anything to fit its devices.
Powermat also has a slimmer skin for the iPod touch, as well as forthcoming options for the DSi and PSP prior to a Q4 launch in the UK, Italy and the US.
Phones or PMPs without a dedicated Powermat case can use the Powercube, which has a variety of interchangeable tips to power different devices. These will also be available for £30 as well.
The company also told TechRadar it is looking into integrating the technology into other devices too, such as powertools, laptops and even furniture, meaning you could just place your iPhone on a worktop and have it charge wirelessly.
Powermat is also set to show off an Apple workstation at CES in 2010, with wireless charging zones for a Macbook and an iPhone, with wireless synchronisation between the two, as well as speakers for multimedia content.
Other territories, such as Germany, France and Benelux, will get the Powermat system in Q1 2010.