By Evan Ackerman
One of the things I really hope to see a lot of at CES is wireless power. Or rather, I hope to see wireless power that has progressed beyond a gimmick into something I can actually use without it being more trouble than it’s worth. Last year, we saw works in progress from companies like Powercast and eCoupled, but what’s keeping these technologies from showing up on my desk is (among other things) lack of a wireless power standard. The recent formation of a “Wireless Power Consortium” made up of some notable electronics manufacturers may help move things along by creating standards for charging electronics wirelessly, just like the standards currently applied to wired chargers make it so that you only need one convenient charger for all of your gadgets. Er, yeah.
Anyway, such standards should make it
easier possible for current consortium members like Texas Instruments, National Semiconductor, Olympus, Logitech, Sanyo, and Philips to integrate wireless charging options into their devices. The first thing you’ll probably see is a standard for wirelessly delivering 5 watts or below, which will charge cell phones and comparable devices in about the same time as a wired charger.