Qi inductive wireless charging continues to make inroads into the automotive industry. The 2014 Jeep Cherokee will offer a factory-installed Qi wireless charging pad later this year, while the 2014 Toyota Prius now comes with a specially designed (by Denso) console tray. The Qi standard, developed by the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC), has evolved into an ecosystem of mobile devices, charging accessories and locations, and automobiles, making device charging possible in virtually any location.
Specifically, the Jeep Cherokee’s optional Qi wireless charging pad is part of the optional Uconnect 8.4 package. Charging a Qi-compatible device (e.g., the Samsung Galaxy S4, HTC Droid DNA, or Nokia Lumia 920) simply requires placing it in the middle console to power up. The Prius’ charger employs jointly developed technology from Philips Lite-On Digital Solutions (PLDS) and ConvenientPower. Consumers can charge any Qi-supported smartphone by placing the phone on the charger.
Others that have jumped into the Qi fray include the 2013 Toyota Avalon Limited (which is already in production and available for sale) and Korean automaker Ssangyong. The latter announced that Qi technology will be integrated into the interior console of its Chairman model and will appear in all future vehicles. Other automotive Qi products now available include the Nokia NFC Qi Wireless Charging Car Holder and the Audiovox Aftermarket Qi Charger.