If you've followed the smartphone market a little bit, you've probably heard of AirPower. This is the same charging station that Apple presented in 2017, and two years later, without having released it, was forced to finally cancel it. In Cupertino, they could not achieve the coordinated operation of all induction coils, of which there were about two dozen, and cope with the overheating that they provoked. But the idea was really very successful – the company wanted the smartphone to be chargeable by placing it on any area of the charging station. The solution to the problem, as always, was found by the enterprising Chinese.
Xiaomi introduced its counterpart AirPower. Almost
Xiaomi introduced a charging station called the 20W Smart Tracking Charging Pad. But its unique advantage lies not in the power output, but in the ability to charge Qi-compatible devices regardless of their location. That is, even if the user places a smartphone or wireless headphones, with which the station also promises to cope successfully, it is uneven, it will not be a problem for it, and charging will start anyway. But how did Xiaomi manage to achieve this?
AirPower analog for Android
At first, everyone decided that Xiaomi followed the path Apple and stuffed several induction coils inside the charging station, marking them, at best, overlapping each other, and at worst, just across the entire area. But the Chinese chose a different path, leaving an indication of the peculiarity of the new product in its name. The word Tracking is used here for a reason. It turns out that Xiaomi placed a resistive sensor inside the station body, which determines the position of the charged device, and a two-axis mechanism that moves the coil to the right place.
Considering the station has a 20W output power, it can charge compatible devices quite quickly. That's even more than the included 18W charger for iPhone offers. It charges it in a little more than an hour, which means that wireless charging from Xiaomi will do the same plus or minus. In principle, you still need to take into account the accompanying energy losses, which are inevitable with this method of feeding, but even if they extend charging by 15-25 minutes, it will still be a pretty good result.
Wireless Charging Xiaomi
This is the same mechanism that moves the induction coil.
Disassembling the charging station showed that under the hood it has only one induction module, which means that it can only charge one gadget, although Xiaomi declared compatibility with two devices at the same time. In principle, it is possible that one coil will be able to load two gadgets at once, but, firstly, this is unlikely, and, secondly, the Chinese promise that the charging device can be placed in any area of the station. Therefore, I can't imagine how the smartphone and headphones will charge if you place them in opposite corners.
Be that as it may, the idea that the Chinese have implemented deserves my sincere admiration. Even if their station can only charge one device at a time, which will be enough for most users, it still allows it to be placed anywhere. And this is the greatest value of this kind of accessories. Yes, the engineers Xiaomi had to take a more complicated path, integrating a movable mechanism inside the structure, but it turned out to be an easier and more efficient way to ensure charging of smartphones and other gadgets without the risk of overheating. In general, like.