jol_reporter_expecteverything

 

 

By Jol Abels,
13 years old
Junior Editor Expect Everything

 

 

A couple of weeks ago, I wanted to buy a new phone. While searching the Internet and reading reviews, I noticed that new phones support wireless charging. I was wondering if I should buy a more expensive, wireless rechargeable mobile, or a somewhat cheaper, non-rechargeable wireless one. It got me thinking about this technique. What are the benefits anyway? And are there also disadvantages? I finally chose the cheaper, non-rechargeable wireless phone and decided to wait and follow the developments. In this blog I share my research and what made me to choose for the normal mobile phone. Next time I buy a new phone, who knows, it might be a rechargeable one.

Nowadays, many phones have the ability to be wirelessly recharged. This is how I imagine this: I arrive at home, place my phone at the charger and I’m done! There isn’t any hassle to get the charger into your phone.

Unfortunately, I won´t call it completely wireless, because the charging station has a wire to the power outlet. The wireless part of wireless charging is the contact the phone and the charging station.

 

How does it work?

wireless_chargerSince 2009, this technology is called Qi (pronounced: chi). It works with two magnets, one magnet in the phone and the other magnet in the charging station, or cradle. If both devices are turned on, and located 5 cm or less from each other it creates a magnetic field.

I asked journalist Roel van der Heijden his opinion. He explains: “I think that wireless charging can be important for some applications. Basically, all kinds of applications where you can keep a very small distance between the charger and the device. For other applications I am less optimistic, you will face higher electrical losses and therefor a cable might remain interesting.”

Is there a downside?

There are a few drawbacks to wireless charging I have to mention:

  • a lot of the power is lost
  • it takes much longer to completely refill the battery of your phone
  • you can only charge wireless with devices that run on less than 10 volt (ex. mobile phones, tablets, cameras, keyboards, mice)
  • a good charging station is expensive and a wireless charger is not included with your phone.

Perhaps for now the conclusion is that this technique is not ready yet for ‘real’ wireless charging, but the future has much to offer. If the technique improves, it might be possible to embed the charging stations in, for example, a desk or the floor. Imagine your laptop could be recharged while you are working or when it is in your bag on the floor! Or what do you think of wireless rechargeable cars that are recharged while driving on a road?

I’d like to finish my blog with a fascinating glimpse into the future that Roel gave me: wireless energy from sound. Will this really happen… I don’t know, but the future has a lot to offer!