Technology, especially the stuff packed inside your smartphone, usually follows a linear progression. Each year brings better chips, better Bluetooth connectivity, better displays (goodbye LCD), or better battery life. But one technology in smartphones has been in a years-long tug-o-war with itself—wireless charging.
Apple finally brought this wire-free charging tech to the iPhone with the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, but the idea has been around for years and now with only two formats—Powermat and Qi—duking it out for wireless charging supremacy. But now the fight has finally come to an end.
At CES today Powermat announced that it would be joining the Wireless Power Consortium and will share its technology to further promote the Qi wireless standard. With Powermat joining the fold, there will no longer be confusion over what charging pad charges what phones. The future, hopefully, will now be wireless charging bliss.
Ever since Palm (yes, Palm) first adopted the technology, wireless charging soon split into to competing standards, simultaneously confusing would-be buyers and making phone makers shy away from the whole confusing mess. Samsung even resorted to putting both standards in its phones, beginning with the Galaxy S7 in 2016.
It’s likely that Powermat and Qi joining forces in large part because of the iPhone’s adoption of the Qi standard last year. It wouldn’t be the first time Apple ceremoniously laid to rest a technology it deemed unworthy (sorry, audio jack). It’s uncertain what this will mean for phones going forward, but it just became much more likely that your next phone might finally bring some wireless bliss into your life.