It was great to attend last month’s Wireless Power Technology Forum in Taipei and witness the huge surge in interest in wireless charging technology. The event was organized and sponsored by Avnet with Digitimes, Taiwan’s best known tech media outlet. It provided a great opportunity to witness firsthand the buzz and excitement surrounding wireless power in the immediate aftermath of the Apple iPhone8 and iPhoneX announcements. As expected, the event was extremely well attended with over 700 attendees from 300 companies ranging from IC suppliers, such as IDT, to leading OEM brands, including Asus, HTC and Acer and Taiwan’s stalwarts, such as Primax, FIT and Channelwell.
The impact of Apple’s announcement to adopt Qi in their latest smartphone releases has effectively finally ended the years-long ‘standards war’ with the Wireless Power Consortium’s (WPC) magnetic induction Qi standard emerging as the clear winner. This allows manufacturers and designers to move ahead with confidence and invest in Qi-based products that will be part of a long-term and rapidly expanding wireless charging ecosystem.
It was a lot of fun to listen to some to some of the early adopters in wireless power, such as Max Chyou of FIT who provided an excellent presentation that included some of his wireless power tips and tricks gathered over his many years of experience. I also had the chance to catch up with Channelwell and Jerry Lin from Wyless. Both companies have been the driving force behind the roll-out of more than 600 Qi installations in public venues across Taiwan…and this is just the start!
Hundreds of transmitters have already been installed in many public and private areas throughout Taiwan, including government buildings, airport express trains, restaurants, coffee shops and cafes, hotels, and even extend to leisure locations like spas and night clubs. It is easily foreseen that city and county governments will continue to implement wireless charging stands following the latest launch from that famous fruit brand which accounts for over 50% market share in Taiwan and certainly brings even higher interest in wireless charging. Public libraries and transit systems including subways, high-speed rail, train and train stations shall soon start implement charging stations to provide convenience to users. Major convenience chain stores have also been looking at how to implement wireless charging to attract more customers to their stores and increase product sales. With the strong consumer consumption rate in Taiwan, I certainly believe wireless charging will be heavily discussed and implemented in the next few years in various areas and locations in Taiwan, bringing in the next wave of charging revolution.
The IDT booth at the Wireless Power Technology Forum was constantly crowded with potential customers, as some of the photos indicate. Our reference design evaluation kits attracted a lot of attention from small and medium size customers interested in adopting wireless power in their products. These users often do not have the resources and/or wireless power expertise available to include wireless charging in their designs and they easily saw how IDT’s range of quick prototyping reference design kits, ranging from 1W to 15W, provide a fast time-to-market solution with all the associated support collateral available online.
Taiwan has long been an early adopter of and hot-bed of innovation in electronics and power technologies. The Avnet and Digitimes event demonstrates the growing awareness of wireless power and that the technology has ‘crossed the chasm’ into mainstream adoption. It was great to witness more of Taiwan’s leading companies and innovators embrace wireless power and continue to be at the forefront of innovation for this new and exciting technology.
To learn more about IDT’s wireless power technology and get the quick prototyping kits and technical collateral, visit idt.com/wirelesspower.