Apple Acquires Wireless Charging Company PowerbyProxi

Apple recently purchased PowerbyProxi, a company that designs wireless power solutions, reports New Zealand website Stuff. Apple's senior vice president of hardware engineering Dan Riccio told Stuff that the PowerbyProxi team will be a "great addition as Apple works to create a wireless future."

"We want to bring truly effortless charging to more places and more customers around the world," Riccio added.


PowerbyProxi was founded in 2007 to develop wireless charging technology that lets people charge smartphones and other devices without requiring a cord. PowerbyProxi has developed the Proxi-Module, a modular wireless power system that can adapt and integrate into a wide variety of products and situations, delivering up to 100 watts of power to devices like drones and robots.

The Proxi-Module, which features a modular, waterproof design that lets it adapt to a range of use cases, is said to offer the highest power density of any solution on the market with an end to end efficiency of 91 percent, offering "unprecedented performance" with reduced power and heat losses.

PowerbyProxi has also been working on the development of the Wireless Power Consortium's future Qi wireless charging standard and has received accolades and funding for its work. Apple is also a member of the Wireless Power Consortium as of February 2017.

In a statement, PowerbyProxi founder Fady Mishriki said his team is "thrilled" to be joining Apple.
"The team and I are thrilled to join Apple. There is tremendous alignment with our values, and we are excited to continue our growth in Auckland and contribute to the great innovation in wireless charging coming out of New Zealand."
Apple in September unveiled the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus, and iPhone X, and all three new devices are equipped with Qi-based wireless charging capabilities that allow them to charge from Qi-certified wireless chargers.

Apple is already developing its own wireless charging mat that can charge the iPhone, the Apple Watch, and the AirPods at the same time, and with the addition of PowerbyProxi, Apple could expand into a range of other charging accessories for both home and retail use.

It's not clear how much Apple paid to purchase PowerbyProxi, nor did Dan Riccio elaborate on how the PowerbyProxi technology will be used by Apple in the future.


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Apple Listed as Member of Wireless Power Consortium Behind ‘Qi’ Standard Ahead of iPhone 8

Apple recently became listed as a member of the Wireless Power Consortium, committed to the open development of the Qi wireless charging standard. The listing was brought to our attention by IHS Technology.


If the listing is accurate, Apple has become one of over 200 companies that belong to the consortium, including Samsung, LG, HTC, Qualcomm, Verizon, ConvenientPower, Aircharge, Dell, Canon, Sony, ST Microelectronics, Toshiba, Texas Instruments, Philips, Panasonic, Bosch, Nokia, and Huawei.

Qi is the leading wireless charging standard, used by more than 200 companies in products ranging from smartphones to cordless kitchen appliances. Samsung's latest Galaxy smartphones, for example, feature Qi-based wireless charging which requires placing the device on one of its "Fast Charge" stands.

Qi, pronounced "chee," is capable of scaling from less than 1 watt to more than 2,000 watts of power, making the standard more than adequate enough for charging any smartphone. With Qi's latest Quick Charge technology, a five-minute charge can provide a smartphone with up to five hours of battery life.

The so-called "iPhone 8" is widely rumored to include wireless charging, so Apple's participation in the consortium is perhaps unsurprising. Moreover, there is increasing evidence to suggest the "iPhone 8" may use inductive technology, which would require a charging puck or pad, rather than long-range charging.

Luxshare is also a member of the Wireless Power Consortium, which is notable given a recent rumor claiming the "iPhone 8" will have a separate wireless charger based on technology from the Chinese company. Luxshare was rumored to be a supplier of wireless charging coils for the Apple Watch charger.

In 2015, the inductive Apple Watch charger was found to be compliant with the Qi wireless charging standard. However, Apple's involvement in the Wireless Power Consortium does not guarantee that it will use the Qi standard for future iPhones—but it does suggest it has a growing interest in wireless charging technology.

Over the course of the last year, there has been ongoing speculation that wireless charging company Energous has inked a deal with Apple to potentially provide wireless charging technology for the iPhone 8, but patents and other evidence suggest Apple may pursue its own in-house inductive charging solutions instead.


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