Wireless charging gets a boost

Two of three organizations focused on developing standards for the wireless charging of devices have announced their plans to join forces in a bid to hasten global adoption of wireless charging technology.

The Alliance for Wireless Power (A4WP) and Power Matters Alliance (PMA), signed on Monday, a letter of intent to merge and establish an organization that will accelerate the availability and deployment of wireless charging technology.

The merger is expected to close by mid-2015.

Under terms of the letter of intent, the new entity will operate under a new name.  The A4WP and PMA Boards will combine and feature a roster of global consumer brands, supply chain and market leaders: AT&T, Broadcom, Duracell, Flextronics, Gill Electronics, Integrated Device Technologies (IDT), Intel, Powermat, Qualcomm, Samsung Electronics, Samsung Electro-Mechanics, Starbucks and WiTricity.

The A4WP is backed by more than 140 companies including Intel and Samsung Electronics while the 70-member PMA has AT&T and Starbucks on its board.

There is another wireless charging standards group in the space. The wireless Power Consortium has 217 members. Its ranks include Nokia, Philips and Qualcomm.

The merger will enable mobile network operators confidently invest in the “long-term evolution and management of innovative wireless chagrining technologies,” according to a statement from A4WP and PMA.

Consumers on the other hand, will benefit from the creation or a multi-source supplier base that will add value to a broad range of products such as Bluetooth headsets and wearable devices to smart phones, tablets, laptops and other gadgets.

“The standards war narrative represents a false choice,” said Kamil Grajski, board chair of A4WP.” Consider that the typical mass-market smartphone contains a multiplicity of radio technologies (Bluetooth, NFC, Wi-Fi, 3G, LTE) each built around a vibrant ecosystem, whereas other devices are single-mode (Bluetooth headset).  The A4WP PMA merger is in the same spirit: enable the market to apply technologies to their best use cases.”

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Nestor E. Arellano
Nestor E. Arellano
Toronto-based journalist specializing in technology and business news. Blogs and tweets on the latest tech trends and gadgets.

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