Soon, wireless smartphone charging in your cars courtesy Toyota

Dec 21 2012, 19:13 IST
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SummaryCharging your smartphone while driving could become a simple process within a year.

Charging your smartphone while driving could become a simple process within a year by using a special wireless mat without any need for cables or adaptors.

Japanese auto giant Toyota plans to introduce the system for mobile devices in 2013 in its new car, using a charging standard known as Qi.

According to analysts the feature was likely to become mainstream in the months to come, 'BBC News' reported.

The wireless charging option will be a part of the company's USD 1,950 "technology package", said to be available from next spring.

A person will simply have to place the cellphone on the mat, though the handset has to have an integrated Qi protocol in order to be charged.

Qi wireless charging is currently supported by 34 mobile phone models and there are also add-on systems for other smartphones.

"Pioneering the ability to charge with no wires or connectors by simply putting devices in the car console is an intuitive innovation which reflects Toyota's continuing commitment to improve the consumer experience," said Randy Stephens, chief engineer of Toyota Avalon, in a statement.

Qi works via magnetic induction that involves transmitting energy over a magnetic field.

Inductive charging plates have been around for several years, and have been integrated in some mobile phones, such as the Palm Pre.

However, in 2008, the Wireless Power Consortium, which has more than 100 phone brands as members signed an agreement for an open standard for wireless power, called Qi, which means that any Qi-enabled handset is compatible with a Qi charger, regardless of the brand.

General Motors has announced its plans to introduce a pad using magnetic induction, but so far it has not happened.

Israeli firm, Powermat Technologies, is currently placing charging pads for mobile phones in numerous public venues around the US, including Starbucks, the report said.

There are companies investigating wireless charging via induction for electric cars, which works by having a charging pad on the floor of your garage.

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