For a number of years now we've been reporting on patent applications and industry rumours suggesting that Apple is working on wireless charging technology for its iPhone range.More specifically, it's revealed that Apple has hired two former uBeam engineers in the past four months.Apple's hiring of those with uBeam expertise points to an exciting possible future for the iPhone family.One where our phones are charged while we're walking around our homes, our local shopping mall, or an airport departure lounge.In the past two years, Apple has hired more than a dozen staff with expertise in the wireless charging field.Is it too soon to hope for such a feature in next year's iPhone 8?
Pebble Core is "a tiny little Android phone without a screen" Pebble co-founder and CEO Eric Migicovsky explained to me, but while runners gave the company an excuse to make it, it's hackers he's most excited about.Doing away with the display meant Pebble could take advantage of a couple of things: no power-hungry, GPU-intensive screen allows the gizmo to offer decent battery life off a comparatively small battery, while the processor can be fairly humble too.On the outside, there's a power switch and a headphone jack up top, along with a keychain loop, while a removable magnetic clip is on the back; Migicovsky expects various different mounts to be developed, and hopes the system will be embraced by third-parties in the same way that several companies now offer Pebble smartwatch straps.One of the common complaints from existing Pebble owners, he explained to me, is that while they like wearing the watch to track steps and heart rate while exercising, they still feel obliged to carry their phone with them for music, route tracking, and emergency use.Since it's based on the new "Actions" interface Pebble is introducing with its Pebble 2 and Pebble Time 2 smartwatches, though, the possibilities are much broader.It's an intriguing device, certainly, though Pebble isn't pairing it with a similarly ambitious cellular program.
The company s bottle, launching on Kickstarter today, is the newest, most high-tech weapon in the battle to get kids to imbibe enough liquids throughout the day.Cute, no?The water bottle has a small screen built in, and additional sensors mean that shaking two bottles in close proximity to each other make the pets friends, enabling them to interact.The company claims the Gulülu will stay juiced for four days before another recharge is required.Parents can also schedule sleep or school modes, during which the pets go to sleep and become unresponsive, so the pets don t become a distraction during sleeping or learning hours.The company estimates a shipping date of September, and the recommended retail price will be $129 once the products start making an appearance on shelves.
The Cupertino firm has made a number of new hires in the field, while simultaneously extending feelers to existing firms with experience of running the sort of charger infrastructure electric cars require in order to tip into the mainstream.Instead, the focus is the underlying technology around recharging, arguably a less "sexy" area than the Apple Car itself, but no less vital for the company to get right if, indeed, such a project is on the cards.The latter are a source of interest for a number of established automakers - BMW and Mercedes-Benz announced they'd collaborate on such technology back in 2014 - but so far wireless charging for production vehicles has failed to materialize.The Model 3, Tesla's upcoming $35k car, will also get complimentary Supercharger access, CEO Elon Musk confirmed at the EV's unveiling, simultaneously promising to expand the network to over 7,000 chargers by the vehicle's release at the end of 2017.The Model S and Model X - and the Model 3 to come - all use a proprietary connector, whereas the rest of the EV industry has settled on more common standards.Speculation that is working on an electric car of some sort surged in early 2015, with reports of a "Project Titan" occupying a team more than 1,000 members strong, and focused on EV drivetrains, semi-autonomous and autonomous driving, and connect car technology.
The initial technology will compete directly with AirFuel, with "real" wireless charging a couple years down the road.But startup Energous said on Wednesday that it has received FCC certification for its WattUp technology, even if the promise of true wireless charging will have to wait a couple of years.Here s how Ossia s technology works:Not quite ready yetConsumers, however, won t be able to take advantage of this anytime soon.Earlier this month, Energous Chief Executive Stephen Rizzone laid out the company s roadmap: The Mini WattUp transmitter, which enables contact charging at distances of about 3mm, should be available in consumer devices by early 2017.Both Energous and Ossia treat wireless power like Wi-Fi, beaming the radio waves directionally and then harvesting them using receiver antennas that must be mounted inside client devices or at least in charging cases.That s meant that Energous prioritized its Mini WattUp transmitter to make some money, Rizzone said.
Summer has arrived early in much of the country, and in some places with a vengeance, and so too has the need to stay hydrated in the heat.So to help the smallest members of your family and let s be honest, you as well drink enough water, there s a new interactive water bottle that gamifies your children s water intake — the Gululu Interactive Water Bottle.Featuring a screen, a home button, a pair of touch sensors, Wi-Fi, and wireless charging capabilities, it s one of the most high-tech water bottles out there, but also perhaps the most effective.Thanks to a companion app, you can set hydration goals based on your child s age, weight, and location.The closer your child gets to his or her optimal water intake, the healthier the virtual pet becomes — the animated character will grow, collect treasure, and explore an underwater world of adventure known as the Gululu Universe.You can pre-order this futuristic water bottle yourself for the early-bird price of $89 in colors that include Bowhead Blue, Uni-dragon Violet, Submarine Yellow, Monster Green, and Starfish Pink.
Good old gumshoe detective work may have exposed Apple's electric car plans.Recent hires found via LinkedIn updates, showed Apple went on a hiring spree for EV charging engineers, including Nan Liu, an EV wireless charging engineer, and Kurt Adelberger, a former Google charging professional.Apple already gives its employees free access to charging stations, so experts believe that the new communications surround the potential Apple EV.There's plenty of charging station manufacturers with which Apple could connect, including General Electric, VersiCharge, AeroVironment, ChargePoint, Siemens and more."It would be natural to assume if Apple is going to have a full battery electric vehicle that creates a seamless consumer experience the way Apple does, the charging infrastructure and its availability would be of paramount importance," the source said.In California, alone, consumers will need 13 to 25 times the current available charging stations by 2020 as a projected 1 million EVs hit the road, according to the National Renewable Energy Laboratory.
Wireless charging sits high upon the wish list of still-missing iPhone features, with rumours pointing to inclusion in 2017's models maybe .But why wait when Mophie is ready to upgrade your current iPhone?The case-maker, best known for its boosted battery packs, today announced the Juice Pack Wireless for the iPhone 6s/6 and iPhone 6s Plus/6 Plus.Other iPhone cases with wireless charging are already available, but Mophie brings its well-known brand and battery pack expertise into the market - and the cases add the benefit of up to 60% additional battery life for each phone.The Charge Force technology is a nice benefit, too: it's essentially just a series of magnets found inside the case, but it ensures that your phone sticks to the charging plate and doesn't slide off.
Mophie is the 1 brand in extending your range between charges, and with the launch of Charge Force , the brand wants to remove incessant plugging and unplugging from your life, too, with a brand new wireless ecosystem.Dress your phone in a fetching little electronic tuxedo in the form of a Mophie Juice Pack battery case and you re good to go.For your home or office, you can purchase a desk mounts with powerful magnets in it; it keeps the phone securely mounted, and you can use it while it s charging, or pick it up and walk off with it to make a call or run off to lunch.Of course, you still need to plug it into a cigarette lighter or a USB port in your car, but the advantage with having the charging pad permanently installed is that you can tuck away the wires out of sight.For the wireless charging geeks among you: The charging pads are Qi pads running at about 1 amp of charging power, so you shouldn t see a huge drop the charging speed you re used to with your cables — but the Juice Packs support both Qi and PMA standards, so if you find yourself in a bar, restaurant, or hotel that has wireless charging pads installed, you can drop your phone on one of them and giving your phone s battery a much-needed spoonful of electronic love.The kits retail at $99 and are available from Mophie, Apple and Best Buy, with Apple retail stores and Best Buy stores following in a few weeks.
For all its innovation and design prowess, Apple, like most smartphone makers, has been slow to pick up on the whole wireless charging thing, much to the consternation of iPhone users.The accessories are designed for use with the iPhone 6, iPhone 6S, iPhone 6 Plus, and iPhone 6S Plus, and support all the main wireless charging standards, including Qi and Powermat.What's more, the new cases also come with built-in magnets, allowing them to stay attached to charging bases and Mophie's new wireless charging car vent and desktop mounts.The new cases, versions of which can already be bought for the Samsung Galaxy series, also include a 1,560 mAh battery in the iPhone 6 and 6S versions, and a 2,420 mAh battery in the iPhone 6 Plus and 6S Plus versions.Mophie also intends to include wireless charging capabilities in every new Juice Pack it produces in the future, as part of its 'Charge Force' brand.1 smartphone in the world right now?
iPhone Wireless Charging CaseI ve never really got the point of wireless charging phone cases — I d rather plug my phone in on a nightstand, and the cases themselves add all sorts of bulk.But pair a wirelessly-charging battery case with a magnetic phone holder for your car?I already use a much cheaper magnetic mount in my car, and a docking station at my desk, but Mophie s versions are quicker to use, and will charge your phone without needing to plug in a wire.There are still concerns.Wireless charging is also an unsettled industry: Mophie s case supports Qi and Powermat solutions, the two most popular on the market, but new technologies are in the pipeline that could be much faster and make Mophie s case obsolete .But overall, getting an extra 50 percent battery charge, and wireless charging, seems like it would be worth $100.
Charging devices is a little annoying, but it s set to get easier — wireless charging is on the rise, and while only certain phones currently allow for it, some companies are trying to bring it to everyone.The cases finally bring wireless charging to the iPhone 6, 6S, 6 Plus, and 6S Plus, however the case is also available for the Galaxy S7 and S7 Edge.Wireless charging is being integrated into our lives at coffee shops, restaurants, airports, in furniture, cars, and so on, said mophie COO and co-founder Shawn Dougherty, in a statement.Along with the cases, mophie is also offering a desk mount and a car vent mount — instead of having to clip the phone in like other car mounts, you simple touch it to the mount, and the magnets will hold in in place.Still, the fact that the case is magnetic and connects to other related accessories is an interesting addition, and while it s not that groundbreaking, it does make things a little easier.The price — the new products start at $100, which isn t cheap, especially when there are other wireless charging cases out there for less.
Dubbed the Juice Pack Wireless, the new cases from Mophie bring wireless charging to the classic Mophie ecosystem.The pads use magnets to help keep your phone safely and securely connected, either vertically or horizontally.These mounts also work with Mophie s existing wireless cases for the Samsung Galaxy S7 and Galaxy S7 Edge.The Palm Pre supported wireless charging – but it s only been in the past year or so that we ve seen wider adoption.Restaurant chains such as McDonald s and Starbucks support wireless charging, and more phones including Samsung s Galaxy S7/Galaxy S7 Edge support it too.You can order the Juice Pack Wireless from Mophie.com, BestBuy.com and buy it in Best Buy retail stores now.
Though the Juice Packs will be compatible with both common standards, Mophie has thrown in magnets into its implementation too.That helps orient the phone correctly on the pad, but also holds your phone on the vent mount or desk stand in either portrait or landscape orientation."We feel that once people buy into the vent mount, into the system," Howe says, "they'll come back next time to buy a Mophie product."It also opens the door to new types of products which could be powered wirelessly and hang magnetically in place - "basically, anything which has a USB cable today, we could do wireless" Howe teases - and Mophie says there'll be more over the next few months on that front.Those questions will undoubtedly be answered over the coming months, but it seems Mophie - despite what have turned out to be premature predictions that the company would be killed off when Apple made its own power case - isn't ready to bow out of the battery space.They'll be in Apple Stores in about a week's time.
Apple's WWDC keynote starts on Monday, June 13 at 10am Pacific that's 1pm Eastern, 6pm GMT , and it promises to be one of the more interesting ones for the Cupertino company.MacBook Pro 2016The MacBook has just been refreshed, so the MacBook Pro is next for an update - and where better to unveil a new Pro laptop range than at your annual developers' conference?It's also been rumored that Apple will base its Watch 2 processor on the ARM Cortex A32, which is 25% faster than the current ARM-based processor and offers vastly improved battery life, addressing one of the Watch's biggest issues.Apple has trademarked lots of Californian place names so it isn't short of successors to El Capitan, but code buried deep inside a file that's been in OS X's System folder since 2015 refers not to OS X, but to macOS - the name Apple used to use for its operating system.It seems to be more than a retro flashback; OS X doesn't fit with the current Apple OS convention that spans watchOS, tvOS and iOS, and Apple's latest update to its environmental page described macOS, not OS X.We're hoping that the lack of Mac Pro updates is because Apple's working on a really amazing new one, not losing interest in it altogether.
Maybe I m just lazy, but the one thing I hate doing while on vacation is charging my Apple Watch.There s no ports for a Lightning cable, and you can t use it to give your MacBook an extra 30 seconds of life.Aside from four lights indicating power level and a button to toggle it on, the inductive charger is on the top while a rubberized foot holds it in place on a desk or nightstand.It also tends to toggle off when my Apple Watch reaches about 90 percent power for some reason.Still, I enjoy toting it along more than I like dismantling my nightstand Apple Watch dock to remove the cable.But for convenience — and not needing to find outlets in a hotel room or coffee shop — the Zens is a great travel companion.
Astro has been long known as the gold standard for gaming headsets and now it has updated its wireless A50 headset with a fully customizable audio experience and a new wireless charging base.The new wireless gaming headset comes built on Astro's all-digital Command Center platform, allowing users to tweak every input and output, while also creating their own custom EQ profiles.And for the uninitiated, the Command Center software lets you alter game volume, chat audio, mic, and AUX channels individually to generate custom audio mixes for streaming output.Users can plug in the base station into a PC as well as an Xbox One or PS4 depending on which version of the A50s they pick up.The Astro A50 wireless gaming headset will release later this summer for $300.It's only a few days before the E3 2016 madness begins
Among the many challenges people face everyday, one of the most frustrating perhaps is the low battery curse to befall one's phone.A noteworthy aspect of the wireless charging device is that it uses conducting technology instead of the more commonly used induction technology.You have to be above a precise point in order to charge your device efficiently.Energysquare's wireless charging pad is capable of charging phones four times faster than traditional chargers"We can charge devices up to 4 times faster than with a charger using induction and the device is compatible with every Apple and Android devices existing on the market.The stickers, however, may be a temporary aspect of the device as Energysquare has already developed iPhone cases that have integrated the stickers technology.Although the startup is currently focusing on its kick-starter campaign, it has big plans for the future and hopes to soon also be compatible with other electronic devices like laptops and even drones.
Motorola has a new smartphone in the works called the Moto Z Force that is expected to launch soon.One of the coolest things about this smartphone is that Motorola designed the smartphone to work with a bunch of different accessories called Moto Mods.Pricing on some Moto Mods have been revealed ahead of the smartphone debuting, and as you might have expected they aren't exactly cheap.Important details about wireless charging protocol and exactly how large the battery pack is are unannounced.If you want more details on the Moto Mods, we talked about them earlier this month with a bit more detail.These accessories are certainly not cheap with similar aftermarket accessories being much more affordable.
Yeah, the LG G5 ships without an app drawer.According to Business Korea, industry sources say that LG has just completed development of a phone could be wirelessly charged at a distance of up to 7 cm from the actual charging pad.It uses a technology is known as magnetic resonance-based wireless charging.By comparison, magnetic induction wireless charging, supported by the popular Qi standard as well as PMA, requires contact.The feature has proven popular with phones like the Galaxy S7 Edge.Though it wasn t the most elegant implementation, and LG would need to really wow buyers with a slick setup in order to convince them it s time for another phone.