Saturday, October 11, 2008

Gadgets – WildCharge – Gets rid of your wire clutter

This is one of those products that will score high on the WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor). I have tons of wires hanging all over the house (for the ipod, for the cameras, for the phones). This product tries to solve the problem by getting rid of the wires between the power outlet and your device.

The WildCharge is a mat with multiple strips that run the length of it. You plop your device on to the mat and voila – it should start charging.

Now what is difference between this device and others that have been invented is that it has taken the low tech route and hence managed to get the product developed to a point where it has made it to the market. Until now, most wireless chargers used inductive charging to charge the device. This worked for your cordless toothbrushes, but the technology is not yet there to make it efficient enough to make it work for a device that needs more juice – such as your blackberry. Instead, the WildCharge uses metallic strips that conduct power into the device via contact points strategically placed on your device so that in almost any configuration they will make the necessary contact with the metallic strips on the pad to complete the loop and start a charging cycle.


Currently the package is available only for a couple of Blackberries and a Motorola phone. For the BlackBerry you get a sleeve which contains the contacts necessary to charge the phone. The Motorola has a much more nifty implementation – where you get a whole new battery cover – which incorporates the contact points – This makes for a much more attractive package.


I wonder, if this technology will become a standard which cell-phone manufactures will adopt and the contacts will appear on all future cell-phones.

One thing though, would be that with the current configuration, I am not sure if the phone will be able to communicate with the charging pad and let it know how much power it needs. This I think might be important if we wish to charge multiple devices on the mat, each having a different power requirement. (Unless by some miracle – cell phone manufactures did on standardizing phone power requirements – which I highly doubt in an industry that hasn't even been able to standardize the power connectors into a phone.)

No comments: