Charging Devices Get Smarter
By John Laposky On Jan 30 2012 - 5:01am
LAS VEGAS —
charging products made a significant
splash at International
CES, as consumers with multiple
high-draw devices seek an
alternative to carrying multiple
chargers with them everywhere.Kanex
unveiled its Sydnee,
a four-USB-port docking station
that delivers 2.1 amps of
power per port, strong enough
to charge multiple smartphones
and tablets simultaneously. It includes
a built-in cable-management
system and will become
available at the end of Q1 at a
suggested retail of $149, in black or
launched a wireless
magnetic charging system for the iPad
that can double as a mounting system.
The LaunchPort starts with the PowerShuttle,
a sleeve-style, soft-touch
black case that securely holds the iPad
2 and is used to mount to either the
BaseStation and/or WallStation. Wireless
induction charging begins as soon
as a PowerShuttle is mounted to a station.Magnets are used to mount and
affix the iPad in its PowerShuttle to the
The tabletop brushed-aluminum Base-
Station only uses some of the neodymium
magnets in the LaunchPort system,
making it easier to grab and go, the
company said. The 360-degree rotating
WallStation uses all magnets in the
system for secure and safe mounting.
The magnets are located on the PowerShuttle
case allowing it to be mounted
to any metallic surface.
The PowerShuttle has a built-in proprietary
Wave Guide that acoustically
concentrates and directs iPad speaker
audio sound back at the user. It’s also
equipped with a MiniUSB port for
charging with an Apple power adapter
and syncing to a PC.
The PowerShuttle retails for $149,
the BaseStation and the WallStation
for $199 each.
A relatively new player in the charging
game is industry veteran Oregon
Its new Time and Wireless
Charging Station+ is the company’s
second wireless charging station for
iPhone using the Qi wireless standard.
It is a single charging pad that includes
a monochrome LCD that displays time,
indoor temperature and outdoor temperature
(with included mountable sensor.)
It adds a radio-controlled clock, a
barometer for weather forecast, plus a
ceiling projector for the time and temperature.
It requires a Qi iPhone sleeve, sold
separately. The Station+ is expected in
the second quarter at an approximate
suggested retail of $129.
Wireless charging pioneer Fulton
showed a variety of prototype
wireless charging solutions using
its eCoupled wireless technology.
The demos included new developments
in the spatial limits of traditional
wireless charging — for example, a device
being moved around on and above
a surface while maintaining a continuous
charge, the ability to wirelessly
charge through a metal surface, and
the charging of a smartphone wirelessly
while it is stored in a handbag.
Other demonstrations included devices
charging within the general area
of a wireless transmitter and an advanced
wireless power solution that
can be built into almost any surface,
including packaging and publications.
Fulton exhibited a recent issue of Entertainment
Weekly magazine powered
by eCoupled technology. The magazine
lit up on a shelf using wirelessly
powered printed electronics – a lowpowered,
low-cost, flexible example of
wireless power in action, the company
said. The prototype demonstrated how
wireless power can be used by publishers
and advertisers to attract readers’
attention, and drive new revenue
Fulton’s booth also included the
cockpit of a car that has its interior surfaces
enabled for wireless power.Energizer
rolled out its first full line
of Qi-standard inductive charging devices,
including a dual-zone model.
Looking ahead, a walk through the
Wireless Power Consortium’s
(WPC) meeting space at the show revealed
a raft of prototypes for wireless
charging built into practically any flat
surface available, including nightstand
tabletops, desk drawers, car consoles
and car door pockets.
In addition to the 75 individual devices
on display with inductive charging
built-in on an OEM basis, WPC execs
cited the potential for wireless charging
to be built into surfaces in public
places, such as airports, train stations
and libraries, something that has been
gaining momentum in Japan.
The WPC also cited Motorola’s endorsement
of the Qi standard as a
significant development on the device
OEM side of the business.