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A glimpse of the next wireless revolution

gadgets Updated: Jan 10, 2013 12:07 IST


Technology demonstrations at this year's International Consumer Electronics Show highlight that wireless charging and power is about more than keeping the batteries of smartphones and tablets permanently topped up.

As interest in wireless charging continues to grow, Fulton Innovation is giving consumers a glimpse into its vision of a wireless future, as well as the first live demonstration of two-way wireless power charging. Developed to recharge multiple devices without cables, the technology, called eCoupled, enables a tablet to be charged wirelessly which in turn can simultaneously wirelessly charge the battery of a smartphone or other electronic device sitting on top of it.

Wirelss charging, sometimes referred to as induction charging, is expected to explode in popularity over the coming years, and a number of the world's leading tech firms, from Nokia to Samsung and Google, are already incorporating the feature into their products.

Considered by many as one of the most important driving forces pushing the technology into the mainstream, Fulton Innovation is using the International Consumer Electronics Show (CES) not only to publicize its own products but to highlight the capabilities of wireless charging and the benefits that it can bring to the modern consumer.

One of the most interesting uses is for replacing traditional power sockets. When the technology is reported on, the focus is typically on mobile devices and how the technology can do away with connecting cables, but wireless power could also revolutionize the way consumers design, organize and furnish their homes. For example, with kitchen work surfaces that double as wireless charging plates and kitchen appliances converted to run on direct power, the home cook can place a blender or kettle wherever there is space, rather than where there's a power socket.

Other applications could extend to a TV and set-top box that automatically switch off and charge the batteries in a remote control when the controller is placed on top or a work desk and coffee table that automatically charge any compatible device each time it is placed on the furniture.