The arrival of the LG G6 has put wireless charging back on the map for smartphones, and 2017 could see a resurgence of the technology. The AirFuel Alliance has added 10 new members to its group over the last few months, and has announced the latest additions at MWC 2017.
Members now include smartphone giant Huawei and audio manufacturer Bose. These companies join the ranks of Lenovo, LG, MediaTek, Samsung, Sony, Qualcomm, and many others, as major mobile brands helping to shape AirFuel’s wireless charging standard. Here’s the full list of the ten new members:
- Huawei – mobile phones, tablets, and networking equipment
- Bose Corporation – headphones, speakers and other audio tech
- Motorola Solutions – industrial radios and networking
- GaN Systems – transistor supplier
- Gengee – digital sports equipment and wearables
- Handeholder Products, Inc – phone and tablet accessories
- Metaboards, Ltd – Oxford University scientific holding company
- Redpine Signals, Inc – ultra low-power Wi-Fi chipset supplier
- Shenzhen Hongizsheng Technology Co – B2B cable manufacturing
- Zonecharge WirelessPower Technology Co. – wireless charger hardware supplier
Last month, smartphone big timer Apple joined rival wireless charging group, the rival Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) group. This announcement led some to speculate that Apple throwing its weight behind the WPC’s Qi standard could mark the beginning of the end for the wireless power standard’s battle. There’s no denying that Apple’s consumer base could give Qi a big boost to its market share, especially as Samsung has remained more imparcial by supporting both Qi and PMA charging inside its Galaxy S and Note flagships, as does the LG G6.
However, a number of big names joining the AirFuel Alliance suggests that there may be a long way to go yet before we see a ubiquitous wireless charging standard emerge. Especially as Huawei is the third largest smartphone manufacturer in the world, and controls a big share of the Chinese market. That’s a lot of smartphone consumers that could potentially use AirFuel’s technology in the future.
Keep an eye out for more wireless charging tech heading our way this year.