Broadcom's New Chip Will Let Your Phone Use Any Wireless Charger

There are way, way too many wireless charging standards, which is part of the reason that the technology is struggling to take off. Now, though, Broadcom has developed a chip that could allow your phone to use any of them. This could change things completely.

The thing about the super-fragmented wireless charging market—take your pick from PMA, Rezence and Qi or one of plenty more—is that it's difficult for manufacturers to work out which will endure. So, rather than including technology that may become obsolete, many OEMs just opt not to bother.

Which is where the snappily named Broadcom BCM59350 chip comes in. Firstly, it's capable of using any of the currently available wireless standards. Second, the chip can handle up to 7.5 watts of power rather than the usual 5, which means it charges devices faster, too. The chip is being made available to OEMs, though Broadcom remains tight-lipped about who is planning to use it, other than saying that it's gone out to "select" partners.

The new hardware certainly won't resolve the problems with the fragmented market—that needs either a clear winner, or at least fewer standards and increased compatibility—but it might mean that hardware manufacturers finally start taking wireless charging seriously. Broadcom hasn't stated when the first devices will begin to appear, but you can probably expect to see them in the coming six to twelve months. [Broadcom via Engadget ]

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