Xiaomi Unveils Mi Air Charge, ‘True’ Wireless Charging Technology

BY Sanuj Bhatia

Published 29 Jan 2021

Wireless charging is pretty convenient right now. You smash a phone on top of a slab, and the phone starts to charge. But, it isn’t ‘true’ wireless charging and isn’t as intuitive as it can be. You still, have to keep the phone on the charging stand, and the phone’s barely usable when it’s charging. Xiaomi, today, introduced a new form of wireless charging called Mi Air Charge.

Xiaomi says that the technology revolutionizes wireless charging, by enabling users to charge their devices without cables or wireless charging stands. By using Mi Air Charge, you can charge your device even from a distance of several meters, unlike the traditional wireless charging wherein you had to keep the device on top of the stand. Xiaomi says that now we’re entering ‘a truly wireless charging era.’

The technology requires the use of a charging stand, more like a transmitter, called the charging pile. You can put it in any corner of the room, says Xiaomi. The company says the core technology of Mi Air Charge lies in space positioning and energy transmission.

This charging pile can detect the position of your smartphone using the five phase interference antennas built into it. This is more like Apple HomePod can detect the location of your iPhone using the U1 chip. Then, a phase control array, composed of 144 antennas, transmits millimeter-wide waves to the phone through ‘beamforming.’

mi air charge

On the smartphone side of things, Xiaomi has built-in a miniaturized version of the antenna array into the phone. This antenna array is divided into two parts — beacon antenna and receiving antenna array. The beacon array transmits the location of the phone, accurately, to the charging pile. While the receiving array converts the millimeter-wave signal, transmitted by the charging pile, into electric energy through the use of a rectifier circuit.

The charging, via Mi Air Charge, is capped at 5W for now. Xiaomi says that you’ll be able to charge several devices with this, each at 5W. The company also notes that any physical obstacles, in between the phone and the transmitter, do not reduce the charging speeds.

Our Take

Xiaomi, has truly, disrupted the wireless charging technology with Mi Air Charge. The tech seems futuristic and convenient to the point where one will be able to completely forget about charging their devices. But, the technology hasn’t been approved by the regulators, and we still don’t know if there are any health issues that we should be concerned about.

What are your thoughts on Mi Air Charge? Is this the wireless charging tech you’ve been waiting for? Would you buy this even if the costs of this tech are high? Do let us know in the comments section below!

[Via Xiaomi]