Toyota Plans Wireless Phone Charging

by Christopher Freeburn | December 20, 2012 12:29 pm

Smartphone and Globe[1]Drivers who spend the day on their smartphones will appreciate a new feature to be offered[2] with Toyota’s (NYSE:TM[3]) 2013 Avalon starting this spring.

The Japanese auto giant will introduce technology using Qi protocols that allow users to charge mobile devices wirelessly by placing them in a special charging bin located below the dashboard, USA Today notes.

Wireless charging frees drivers from plugging their devices into charging portals or cigarette lighters. Fiat‘s (PINK:FIATY[4]) Chrysler recently introduced wireless charging as an after-market addition to its new Dodge Dart.

The redesigned Avalon will be the first car to get the wireless charging feature already installed, and Toyota plans to add it to two other, so far unnamed, models. It will be included as part of a package priced at $1,950.

Various smartphones can recharge wirelessly through the use of “sleeves” that fit over the phone, including Apple‘s (NASDAQ:AAPL[5]) iPhone and a number of phones running Google‘s (NASDAQ:GOOG[6]) Android operating system. Some smartphone manufacturers, including Nokia (NYSE:NOK[7]), are developing phones that don’t need sleeves to charge wirelessly.

Other automakers are circling wireless charging technology but have yet to implement it, including General Motors (NYSE:GM[8]) and BMW.

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