Reports indicate that Apple has acquired PowerbyProxi, a tech firm based in New Zealand, which focuses on the development of wireless charging technology. The company was co-founded by Fady Mishriki in 2007 while he was studying at Auckland University for a Bachelor of Engineering degree with a specialization in wireless power systems. His subject of study became the catalyst for the starting of the tech firm. Mishriki is currently the chief executive officer of PowerbyProxi. Mishriki’s co-founder is Greg Cross.
Terms of the deal were however not disclosed though Apple uncharacteristically admitted that it had acquired PowerbyProxi through its hardware engineering senior vice president, Dan Riccio. Licenses for the company’s wireless charging technology have been issued all over the world. According to Mishriki, the wireless charging firm will not be leaving the Pacific nation.
“[The firm will continue its trajectory of] “growth in Auckland and contribute to the great innovation in wireless charging coming out of New Zealand”, said Mishriki in a statement.
Four years ago South Korean conglomerate Samsung put in $4 million in the firm and its shareholding in PowerbyProxi is currently below 10%. Another company that invested in PowerbyProxi was Movac, a tech investor based in New Zealand. Mishriki owns 17.5% of the company.
In its wireless charging technology PowerbyProxi utilizes magnetic induction. PowerbyProxi’s rechargeable battery system is among the tiniest wireless power receivers in the world. These receivers are directly integrated into devices using components that are shaped like regular AA batteries.
Larger charging pads
According to ABI Research’s Jake Saunders, the interest in PowerbyProxi by Apple could be motivated by other products that the New Zealand firm has developed. This includes technology which is capable of transferring 150 watts of electricity via any non-metallic material and this could be applied in wirelessly charging medical equipment and industrial machinery.
For Apple this could allow it to provide bigger charging pads capable of charging a multiple devices such as laptops, tablets and smartphones all at the same time.
Compared to its rivals such as Samsung Electronics Apple has not adopted wireless charging technology as quickly. Until recently when Apple made wireless charging possible with the iPhone 8 Apple had not embraced the technology despite rivals supporting it for a couple of years now. Earlier in the year the Cupertino, California-based tech giant joined the Wireless Power Consortium – the industry body responsible for developing the Qi charging standard.