ubeam prototypeWireless charging technology at the moment isn’t really wireless per se. You’d still have to put it on a wireless charging mat which means that there is only so much freedom you have when it comes to moving it around. The only upside is that you’ll have one less cable to trip over. However last year we reported on a company called uBeam that was developing technology that would allow for wireless charging via ultrasound.

The good news is that if you wanted to see that technology made available, the folks at TechCrunch are reporting that there are several major brands who are vying for the opportunity to invest in the company in hopes of scoring exclusive deals, which in turn would allow them to offer uBeam’s wireless charging technology at their retail locations. In fact Starbucks, a company who currently offers wireless charging in some markets, is said to be close to landing a deal.

Other potential partners includes airline companies such as Virgin, Starwood hotels, fast food chain outlets, and there is even talk about working with Apple and Samsung. Now for those who are hearing about uBeam’s technology for the first time, the company will rely on the use of ultrasonic transduction to help power devices. How this is done is that transmitters will take power from an outlet and convert it into ultrasonic sound waves and beam it to a device with a receiver.

The receiver will then convert the ultrasonic vibrations into energy which will then charge your device(s). In fact the company boasts that despite the fact that there are no wires, its charging speed will be similar to that if you were to plug it into the wall. There are some concerns namely safety, but the company claims that the ultrasonic waves are the same ones used in ultrasound scans for babies in the womb, although we have to wonder if long-term exposure might result in some kind of negative effect.

The receivers are also said to be cheap and will cost around $50, although since it has yet to be commercialized we can’t say for sure what the final price will be. In any case for proponents of “true” wireless charging, it sounds like uBeam’s technology is taking us one step closer to that reality.

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