Microsoft and Samsung join the board of a wireless charging consortium

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The future has lurched a step closer today as it has been announced that both Microsoft and Samsung have joined the board of Qi Wireless, the group of companies that have all committed to the common Qi charging standard.

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Wireless charging has long been a promise of the future but until now support has been patchy. We’ve seen it in a handful of devices – mostly Nokia’s Lumia range – so it is significant to see Microsoft, who make Windows Phone OS which runs on the Lumia join in. Perhaps more importantly, Android giants Samsung have got on board too.

Other companies that are already involved include the likes of Asus, HTC, LG and Sony – so there is already wide support.

The significance here is that it means that much like how mobile phones all use the common Micro-USB standard for plug-in chargers, hopefully this Qi deal points to phone manufacturers coming towards a common standard for wireless charging – so we won’t be back to the bad old days of awkwardly having to ask if someone has a charger for a Nokia?

The only potential stumbling block is a rival consortium – the Power Matters Alliance (PMA) – which also count a large number of companies backing that standard (some, you’ll notice, are backing both). Does this mean we’ll see duelling standards a la Blu-Ray vs HD DVD for a while? Let’s hope not.

Still – now these two heavyweights are on board, it can’t be long until we’re all charging our phones without plugging in, right?

James O’Malley

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