Stuff New Zealand reported on Wednesday that Apple had acquired the local wireless charging company PowerbyProxi for an undisclosed amount. Both parties confirmed in statements to the press that the deal was sealed, hinting at larger efforts focused on inductively charged devices.
The tech giant has merely introduced wireless charging as a feature to its most well-known product lineup this year, with the iPhone 8, 8 Plus, and X gaining the capability of refueling juice without plugging them into the wall.
Apple also plans to introduce a wireless charging panel for brand devices in the coming months, although the PowerbyProxi acquisition raises some more interesting proposals. Industry experts will watch closely to see how this working relationship unfolds.
— PowerbyProxi (@powerbyproxi) May 11, 2017
PowerbyProxi’s specialty is thinking out of the box
PowerbyProxi is a small company born in Auckland, New Zealand, ten years ago. Its mission involved the development of wireless or inductive technology using the widely popular Qi standard, which is one of the two reigning charging methods currently used around the world.
It was that focus what led them to develop products that range from a standard charging base or panel to wireless charging-compatible AA batteries. These come with LED lights that blink when charging through one of their products.
The firm has also developed what they call modules, which are essentially battery attachments to transform regular devices into gadgets that support wireless charging technology. These go so far that they even work underwater.
However, one of the more interesting prototypes PowerbyProxi has been seen working on is a box. This box creates what is basically a wireless charging field for any gadget you put inside, making it possible to charge multiple devices in any position regardless of how you place them. It even works with their proprietary wireless batteries.
Samsung could profit from Apple’s buyout
Among the companies that had invested in PowerbyProxi in years prior, there are some local and European firms, but also there is Samsung Ventures, which made a $9 million investment a couple of years back to keep the firm going.
Now, although the deal remains undisclosed, it is estimated that Apple paid $100 million to the New Zealand company to boost their wireless efforts and integrate them into their wireless future project.
That is quite an investment return for everyone involved, but particularly for the workers themselves, who will get to work on the new technology Apple develops for their devices going forward. The AirPower was a solo project, but tomorrow the new AirPods or even MacBooks could be also PoweredbyProxi.