Xiaomi is making remote wireless charging a reality with 'Air Charge' tech

Xiaomi Mi Air Charge Technology
Xiaomi Mi Air Charge Technology (Image credit: Xiaomi)

What you need to know

  • Xiaomi has demonstrated a new wireless charging technology that can deliver a 5W charge remotely.
  • The tech can be used to charge smartwatches, fitness bands, IOT gear, and even phones.
  • There's no date for when the Mi Air Charge tech will make its way to consumer devices at this point.

Over the last 18 months, Xiaomi has delivered several breakthroughs in wireless charging. Its Mi 10 flagships featured 30W wireless charging as standard, and the Chinese manufacturer recently showed off an insane 80W charging tech that could end up in its upcoming flagship, the Mi 11 Pro — which has the potential to be one of the best Android phones of 2021.

Xiaomi is now showcasing a remote charging tech that delivers a 5W charge "within a radius of several meters," with the brand noting that the charging efficiency won't be reduced even if there are obstacles in the way.

Xiaomi Mi Air Charge Technology

Source: Xiaomi (Image credit: Source: Xiaomi)

Dubbed Mi Air Charge Technology, the remote charging system works the following way:

The core technology of Xiaomi's remote charging lies in space positioning and energy transmission. Xiaomi's self-developed isolated charging pile has five phase interference antennas built in, which can accurately detect the location of the smartphone. A phase control array composed of 144 antennas transmits millimeter-wide waves directly to the phone through beamforming.On the smartphone side, Xiaomi has also developed a miniaturized antenna array with built-in "beacon antenna" and "receiving antenna array". Beacon antenna broadcasts position information with low power consumption.The receiving antenna array composed of 14 antennas converts the millimeter wave signal emitted by the charging pile into electric energy through the rectifier circuit, to turn the sci-fi charging experience into reality.

Xiaomi says the tech can be used with speakers, smartwatches, fitness bands, desk lamps and other smart home devices, but as of now there's no mention of when Mi Air Charge Technology will debut in consumer products. It isn't likely we will see the tech in 2021, but it could make its way to Xiaomi's ecosystem products in the coming years.

Other manufacturers have tried (and failed) to make a remote charging standard, but Xiaomi's advantage is that it has a vast ecosystem of connected products. It can leverage its ecosystem to create a truly remote charging solution, and we'll keep an eye out for more details on Mi Air Charge Technology.

Harish Jonnalagadda
Senior Editor - Asia

Harish Jonnalagadda is Android Central's Senior Editor of Asia. In his current role, he oversees the site's coverage of Chinese phone brands, networking products, and AV gear. He has been testing phones for over a decade, and has extensive experience in mobile hardware and the global semiconductor industry. Contact him on Twitter at @chunkynerd.