Twenty years ago the mere thought of wireless telephones was enough to make us raise our eyebrows; now, we can even ditch the cables we use to charge them. And because the highest failure rate in mobile equipment tends to be the fraying and kinked power cord, this is very good news.
While it’s not yet mainstream, you probably already know that smartphones like the Nokia Lumia 820 and the Nokia Lumia 920 are the wireless charging trailblazers. However, there’s plenty more to learn about this futuristic tech.
One. Wireless charging works by using induction – the same basic principle that Michael Faraday discovered way back in 1831. An electrical current in one part of the charger creates a magnetic field, which in turn creates a voltage – and that voltage powers your phone, wire-free! You simply place your phone on top of the charging unit, just like, with an induction cooker, you place your pan on the hob. Simple!
Two. Like any other emergent tech, there are competing systems. Nokia has adopted the Qi standard, developed by the Wireless Power Consortium, a cooperation of worldwide companies that aims to create a proprietary standard for wireless charging technology that will eventually operate worldwide. ‘Qi’ comes from the Chinese concept of energy flow in traditional medicine – pretty appropriate, we think!
Three. You won’t always have to bring your charging pad with you. Nokia, for instance, has teamed up with Virgin Atlantic and Coffee Bean And Tea Leaf, which means that when you’re the London Heathrow Clubhouse lounge, or in a Coffee Bean café, you’ll be able to make use of their table-top charging stations while you relax. Now that’s twenty-first century customer service if ever we saw it.
Four. While many manufacturers are getting in on the act, Nokia aims to be the best of the bunch, which is why it increased the active charging area to over 80 per cent on the wireless charging plate. It also designed the Nokia Wireless Charging Pillow by Fatboy – for when your hard-working phone fancies a well-deserved lie-down – and the Nokia Wireless Charging Stand, which allows you to charge up whilst on video calls. We’re also very fond of the JBL PowerUp Wireless Charging Speaker for Nokia, which will charge your phone as you’re listening to your favourite tunes.
Five. Last but by no means least, wireless charging is better for the planet. Leaving your charger plugged in, after you’ve powered your mobile up, might not make a noticeable difference to your home’s total energy consumption, but when tens of millions of people do the same thing the amount of energy wasted can be huge. Wireless charging only works when your phone touches the charger. No touching. No power. It’s a greener way of energizing your phone and that’s got to be good news for everyone.
As you’ve probably guessed we’re massive fans of the wireless way, but what do you think? Does it herald the start of a brave new wire-free world or is it just an electric flash in the pan?