A recently published Apple patent application has revealed the iPhone 5 manufacturer is working on ‘non-touch’ wireless charging technologies, which could in theory make it into a future generation devices such as the rumoured iPhone 6, or iPhone 5S,and iPad 5.
Wireless charging has only just started to appear in portable gadgets, such as the Nokia Lumia 920, but this system relies on a charging plate or pad to take the place of a plug-in cable.
Apple’s proposed technology uses near-field magnetic resonance (NFMR) to recharge devices without any actual contact, and it may work across distances of up to 1 meter.
The company’s patent was originally filed in November 2010 but emerged into the public domain when it was published at the end of November this year.
It could certainly be a killer USP for a future iPhone or iPad. So far even the conventional induction-coil based wireless charging has yet to make it into any of Apple’s hardware. Instead, the USB cable-based charger was redesigned into the smaller, versatile (but controversial) Lightning connector.
Among the many technical diagrams in the patent application is one showing how NFMR could be built into a desktop computer, such as an iMac, with wireless charging to feed power to peripherals such as a keyboard and mouse, as well as any compatible and nearby portable gadgets that need recharging.
It is not the only proposed touch-free charging technology, however, as corporations such as Qualcomm and Samsung belong to the Alliance For Wireless Power. Therefore Apple could find itself up against competition in the marketplace or, once again, the law courts, if competing tech appears in products and the patent is disputed.
With wireless synching now commonplace, does Apple’s possible plan for a complete alternative to wires appeal to you? Tell us on the Trusted Reviews Twitter and Facebook feeds or via the comments boxes below.