NFC Forum, the global standards and advocacy association for Near Field Communication (NFC) technology, has announced that its Board of Directors approved and adopted the Wireless Charging Specification (WLC). Adoption of this specification will help avoid the need for a separate wireless charging unit for small devices if the device includes an NFC communication interface. For example, a Bluetooth headset which includes NFC technology for pairing could also use the NFC interface for wireless charging. In this case, the NFC antenna is used to exchange the pairing information and to transfer power.
This NFC specification uses the 13.56 MHz base frequency and leverages the NFC communication link to control the power transfer. NFC technology is unique in that it allows the transfer of power to an NFC tag to enable communication by providing a constant carrier signal. The WLC specification makes it possible to wirelessly charge small, battery-powered consumer and IoT devices with a smartphone or other NFC charging devices at a power transfer rate of up to 1 Watt. This will improve the user experience for the two billion consumers and businesses using smartphones and other NFC-enabled devices.
The Wireless Charging Specification (WLC) uses a single antenna in an NFC-enabled device to manage both communications and charging. This solution makes it easier and more convenient to charge low-power IoT devices such as smartwatches, fitness trackers, wireless earbuds, digital pens, and other consumer devices.
The WLC was published last year as a Candidate Specification and after a careful validation process, the NFC Forum is now able to publish this specification as an adopted Technical Specification, ready for implementation in the market.
Koichi Tagawa, chair, NFC Forum, stated that the NFC Forum’s Wireless Charging Technical Specification allows for wireless charging of small battery-powered devices like those found in many of the estimated 36 billion IoT devices in use today. NFC wireless charging is truly transformative because it changes the way they design and interact with small, battery-powered devices as the elimination of plugs and cords enables the creation of smaller, hermetically-sealed devices.
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