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IHS: Wireless charging solutions to grow 616% in 2011

Posted: 08 Jun 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:wireless? charging? consumer electronic? universal solution?

The expected revenue from shipments of wireless charging devices in 2011 is expected to surge by an astonishing 616 percent, according to market research firm IHS iSuppli.

The firm attributes the growth to consumers who are weary of portable electronics devices with tangled cords and cumbersome adapters and are turning to wireless charging devices, making the wireless charging market set to soar this year to $885.8 million, up more than sevenfold from $123.9 million in 2010.

"Wireless charging offers consumers a viable alternative to recharge consumer electronic devices without the need for dedicated power adapters," says Tina Teng, senior analyst for wireless communications at IHS, in a statement. "With the appeal of such solutions, companies are lining up to offer wireless charging despite various technological and standardization issues slowing mass-market adoption."

But there is a catch.

It will take several years for manufacturers to fully implement the technology in their devices, IHS believes. In particular, manufacturers will need to consider how to integrate wireless charging into the design of printed circuit boards, and significant adoption of wireless charging technology will be needed to drive down costs.

Adoption of a common standard that would ensure interoperability is of utmost urgency. At present, all commercial solutions are based on proprietary technology, and the skin made by one company, for example, will not work with the charger pad of another firm, according to IHS.

And to adhere to more environmentally friendly solutions a universal solution needs to be intelligentshutting down a device automatically after it is fully charged, not wasting power when no transmitters are detected on the surface, and flexible enough to be placed anywhere on a charging pad.

Until the industry finds a standard to follow, the wireless charging industry will be fragmented, IHS maintains, and consumers will hesitate to embrace any solution that might not be promoted in the long term.

Nevertheless, the massive upsurge this year of wireless charging will dwarf the market's 60 percent expansion attained in 2010, the first year of meaningful growth for the space, and also will tower above next year's sizable 276 percent increase, according to IHS iSuppli.

Growth will slow to 48 percent in 2015 when revenue hits $23.7 billion, as shown in the accompanying graph.

wireless charging

The market for wireless charging is divided into three segments: product-specific solutions, aftermarket receivers and aftermarket charging pads or stations.

Mobile phones will contribute the largest share of revenue to wireless chargingnot only because of the large volume of mobile devices expected to benefit from the technology, but also because of participation by name brands in manufacturing, providing much-needed market recognition in the process, according to Teng.

Of the four current wireless charging technologies in place today, inductive coupling is the most widely adopted. Other wireless charging technologies include conductive, near-field magnetic resistance and far-field magnetic resonance.

- Nicolas Mokhoff
??EE Times

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