WiTricity has acquired the Halo division from Qualcomm, which will bring to more than1,500 the number of patents and patent applications related to wireless charging WiTricity will own or control.
Through the transaction Qualcomm Incorporated will become a minority WiTricity shareholder.
The acquisition will streamline technology development enabling automakers to deliver EV charging. By parking over wireless charging ground pads located at home, in garages, and public parking spots, EV drivers will be able to recharge hands-free, without the need for any bulky cables, virtually eliminating the need to ever plug in.
Additionally, electrified autonomous vehicle (AV) fleets will require wireless charging as there will be no human drivers present to plug in.
“WiTricity’s wireless charging technology is key to the future of mobility which is clearly electric and increasingly shared and autonomous,” said WiTricity CEO, Alex Gruzen.
“Electric Vehicle drivers and fleets demand a simple, effortless charging experience. Bringing the Qualcomm Halo technology into the WiTricity portfolio will simplify global interoperability and accelerate commercialisation.”
Qualcomm Incorporated and WiTricity have been working collaboratively with global standards organisations, which currently leverage reference designs from each company. This acquisition will simplify ratification of the standard and help ensure interoperability across automakers.
EV drivers will be able to use any standards-compatible pad to charge their vehicles.
“With Qualcomm technology and expertise, we have been able to deliver automotive solutions, like Qualcomm Halo wireless electric vehicle charging (WEVC), not only to support the shared vision of a more efficient, safer and cleaner urban mobility, but also to transform the automotive experience,” added Steve Pazol, advisor, and former vice president and GM, Wireless Charging, Qualcomm Incorporated.
WiTricity recently signed several new licencing deals including Mahle in Germany and Anjie Wireless in China.
Earlier this month, Honda and WiTricity demonstrated their wireless vehicle-to-grid charging model at CES in Las Vegas, leveraging WiTricity’s DRIVE 11 wireless charging system.
Last year also saw the introduction of the world’s first vehicle that is factory equipped with wireless charging, the BMW 530e iPerformance sedan.