updated 11:15 am EDT, Fri September 3, 2010
Qi wireless power now ready for BBerry and iPhone
The Wireless Power Consortium said that its Qi format was ready to be built into hardware. Following earlier approval, Energizer is developing a wire-free charging sleeve for the iPhone 3G and 3GS as well as for the older BlackBerry Curve 8900. Polished versions of either are due in the fall.
Sanyo, ST-Ericsson and National Semiconductor are also making Qi-based devices, although the last two are more likely to produce hardware for others rather than sell it themselves. Prototypes should show at a Consortium meeting in Belgium on September 15.
As part of the news, WPC added that it was working on a higher-powered version of Qi. The current implementation can only handle 5W and is limited mostly to MP3 players, phones and other low-energy devices, but a new spec could support netbooks, tablets and even full-size notebooks or power tools like drills.
Other companies involved in the group include Olympus, Philips, Samsung and Texas Instruments, although they aren't the only companies allowed to make Qi hardware.