In yesterday's patent application Apple filed for its multi-orientation docking station for the iPhone, there was even more tantalizing information: Apple may be preparing wireless docking for its iPhones, iPods and other devices. The technique will use voodoo called induction, and involves hiding coils underneath the surface of a device and its cradle, with the ability to wirelessly transfer data and power.
Here's the evidence:
From the patent application:
"The inductive coils are typically hidden from view behind the housings of each device and therefore they are more aesthetically pleasing than electrical contacts, which need to be exposed in order to operate effectively... Furthermore, inductively based systems are more robust than electrical contacts. For example, there are no contacts to wear out and/or oxidize."
We saw similar technology at CES demonstrated by Fulton Innovation with eCoupled, using inductive coupling to transfer power across thin air. Even though Apple mentioned a similar technique in its patent application, this part of the equation already exists. Expect to see this wireless juju showing up on Apple products and many others in the near future.
Apple may turn to induction for iPod docking, charging [Apple Insider]