Your Future Apple Devices Might Charge Wirelessly

Now how is this for convenience. A couple of years ago a company called WiTricity showed off their wireless charging technology at TED, which does away with complicated devices large charging bases, cables, etc. The basic idea is that a user merely places his device within a 1 meter radius of a WiTricity charging area. Provided the technology is cheap enough to implement, it can potentially mean you might one day have a couple of WiTricity areas from which to charge your devices.

Now Apple has applied to patent a similiar technology which directly refers to the original research made by the original MIT team responsible for the WiTricity concept, so it is only fair that they might license it (You can see the full application here.) My basic understanding of the concept would be that a variety of larger Apple hardware devices would ship with WiTricity charging support built in, which can then in turn be used to power smaller devices like the iPhone, iPad or iPod. So just put your iPhone (iPhone 5 hopefully?) down next to your future Macbook Pro, and the magic happens. Or your future iDevice might in fact ship with a wireless charger. You can see the basic idea behind WiTricity in this diagram:

Wireless charging should not be confused with inductive charging, which requires actual contact with charging device, similiar to the Palm (or HP) Pre which had the optional Touschstone charger. While elegant, it stops charging the moment you lift it off the base, which might not be a lot more convenient than a normal dock. Wireless charging will enable the device to be charged, even when in use, as long as it is within the charging area.
Right now the technology is said to be safe, and relies on magnetic fields. But the idea of replacing my bedside charger with wireless power still makes me a little uneasy…