Apple, Samsung to offer wireless phone charging, claims report

Both companies will add wireless charging capabilities to their new smartphones this year, says DigiTimes.

Sarah Tew/CNET

Owners of the iPhone 5S or Galaxy S4 will be able to charge their phones wirelessly, claim the folks at DigiTimes.

Based on "industry sources," Taiwan-based DigiTimes said today that the next-generation iPhone will use wireless charging technology developed by Apple. But the sources couldn't say whether the phone would be built with the wireless charging feature or rely on an attached accessory.

Samsung's Galaxy S4 is expected to support the Qi wireless charging technology , which already is used by Nokia and other mobile vendors. The S4 may not include the capability itself but instead require users to buy a back cover that can access a charging pad.

DigiTimes has a history of hits and misses as far as reliability goes, so this report should be taken with a grain of salt.

Apple, at least, doesn't seem to be sold on the idea of wireless charging.

In an interview with AllThingsD last September, Apple Senior Vice President Phil Schiller questioned the convenience of wireless charging systems since they still need to be plugged into a wall outlet. In contrast, the current USB cables can be plugged into computers, outlets, and even on airplanes, he added.

"Having to create another device you have to plug into the wall is actually, for most situations, more complicated," Schiller told AllThingsD.

For those enamored with wireless charging, third-party products like the Powermat and Energizer Qi already provide the technology for many smartphones and other devices.

 

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