It looks the world's best Scrabble word -- but St. Louis-based Energizer says its new "Qi"-enabled device
is actually a way for users of cell phones, digital cameras, and MP3 players to simplify their lives.
As Energizer explains, the Wireless Power Consortium developed Qi standards so that people like us will no longer need separate chargers for every product in our repertoire -- much less a new charger for every new phone. As long your phone is Qi enabled, no matter what manufacturer made it, a Qi charger will work.
Energizer says its new Inductive Charger, announced yesterday in a press release, is one of the first products to work with the new technology. (Oh, and in case you were wondering, Qi is pronounced "chee.)
Energizer, of course, is famous for old-school batteries, the kind that "just keep
going and going." The Inductive Charger is something of a great leap forward.
Brian Gaffney, a spokesman for the product launch, tells Daily RFT
in an email that Energizer is hoping to tap into the huge -- and growing -- market of wireless customers.
"According to market research firm iSuppli, Corp., shipments of electronic products with wireless charging capability are anticipated to increase from 3.6 million units in 2010, to 234.9 million units in 2014," he writes.
The Inductive Charger will allow users to charge up to three devices at once, without having to lock them into a precise position. Just set them on the the charger pad and they should be able to power right up. There's only one catch: Your cell phone, or MP3 player, or whatever, has to be "Qi-enabled."
"We know many cellphone and smartphone manufacturers are working to produce cell phones
with Qi technology built in, and anticipate some will be available before the end of the year," Gaffney says. (He points us toward this list of current companies
.) "In the meantime, Energizer offers sleeves for iPhones (3G and 3GS with 4 coming soon) and a compatible door for the BlackBerry Curve 8900, so users won't have to wait for the new Qi-enabled phones to hit the market before enjoying this new technology."
The Energizer Inductive Charger will be available at Target in October, and on amazon.com as of November, with a suggested retail price of $89.
Simplicity, dear readers, is rarely cheap.