Intentions behind joining the WPC still unclear at this point

The Wireless Power Consortium, the collective of companies behind the Qi wireless charging standard, have added Qualcomm as its latest member. The WPC has over 170 companies backing the standard, but Qualcomm joining the group is most interesting as it was a founding member of the A4WP (Alliance for Wireless Power) — a competing wireless charging standard with just over 60 members.

Being that Qualcomm is heavily involved in the A4WP and is now a member of the WPC, hopes are high that there may be some collaboration between the two groups. There is a long history of competition between the two, and up until this point Qi seems to have grabbed more market share and mind share in the public space. Big names like HTC, Samsung, LG, Nokia, Sony and now Qualcomm are all members — the WPC also announced today that Verizon Wireless has signed on.

It isn't immediately clear at this point what Qualcomm's intentions are for joining the WPC, but we have to hope that it can lead to some kind of synergies in the wireless charging space. Qi is currently fighting an uphill battle of having many different technological hurdles to overcome to be a household name in wireless charging for devices.

Source: Wireless Power Consortium; Via: Engadget


Reader comments

Qualcomm surprisingly joins Wireless Power Consortium, leaders of the Qi standard


That we'll have less competing standards, more standardization, and hence need less peripherals for the plethora of devices out there.

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Innovation keeps people buying. That won't go away. Without standardization, no one buys and everyone loses.

Look at NFC payments as an example. There are too many competing standards and systems for mass adoption.

Exactly, it's just the standard that people will start using (e.g. gas engines vs electric engines). Once the standard is adopted, innovation in refinement will begin.

Everybody will be using Qi, so companies will be trying to produce the best Qi chargers by spending money researching its technology (innovating it). You cannot have innovation UNTIL there is something established to make changes to... it's in the definition of the word.

This is good news, unless you wanted another format to become the standard because it has superior charging technologies - resulting in better speed/range/etc.

Not to mention companies refining the technology to make it smaller, faster, and cheaper, and the third parties that make cheap garbage copies that break in a few months, usually chinese

I don't care who joins what. qi chargers are still way too expensive for anyone to just buy it for fun. Its still very novelty idea....

Indeed. I have 5 around the house as my wife has the Nexus 4 and I have the GS4 with a Qi receiver.

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I just ordered a Nokia Qi charger from AT&T (I'm a Verizon customer) for $24.50, I think that is quite reasonable.

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But its a phone charger. You're not buying it for fun, you're buying it as a tool to charge your devices. Surely people can see enough value in it to spend the $20-$30 on one.

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This reminds me of back in the day when we had to companies fighting for the blu ray standard.

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This might be the push that Qi needs to become the standard for wireless charging, especially with the inclusion of Verizon to the Consortium as well. Qi so far would appear to be taking the lead from a consumer's standpoint, as my nexus 4 and lumia 920 both use Qi, and it is the only wireless charging protocol with which I and anyone I know as consumers have any experience with. Guess we shall see...

As a huge wireless charging fan that pretty much considers the feature as a must have when selecting my next phone, this is huge news to me as anything that will lead towards more standardization and therefore, more phones with Qi is great. We've been hearing about Qi for years now but the tech seems to be moving at snail pace and it's not really that widely supported. Out of the current flagships, the One doesn't support it, the LG G2 only has Qi exclusively on Verizon, the Xperia Z1 doesn't support it (it only has some weird non Qi wireless charging "dock"), and the S4 requires an extra purchase back case. The only real recent phones I can think of that support it out of the box are the HTC DROID Dna and the nexus 4. Let's hope qualcomm joining will spearhead more development in the area.

After all, I love wireless charging (I even modified my desk at home and built a Qi charger into it) but there are some dark secrets to it that not many people know about or nobody talks about. 1.) Most Qi chargers charge at around .5A instead of the full 1A. This is slowww, especially for tablets like the N7 2013 that usually charges at 2A. 2.) Qi chargers produce a lot of heat in both the charger and the phone's battery. 3.) Metal cases won't work (both aftermarket cases and metal bodied phones like the One).... My point is while Qi has been out a long time now, there's still a lot of work to be done in both functionality and supported devices before Qi becomes a household name. Settling on one standard in the first place, Qi instead of A4WP is step 1.

Now we can hope that there will be only 1 standard for wireless charging in the near future.
as a nexus 4 owner I would prefer QI, but really any standard is fine with me as long as its a real standard (meaning, there is no other that isn't compatible)

Wonder if the Nexus 5 will have it, do the FCC certification docs usually say anything about that? The Nexus 7 2013 had it even tho most (all?) of ASUS tablet's don't... And it'd be kinda odd for the Nexus 4 follow-up to regress in that regard. Maybe that's the reason the camera/buttons were relocated? (compared to the G2)

I've been taking advantage of Qi w/my Nexus 7 and it's really rather convenient once you get used to it... Got an LG pad which I like (small lil circle, almost looks like a thick coaster) and a Samsung pad that isn't ideal for the tablet (just got it cause it was on sale).