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Cutting the iPhone's cables

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BuQu Tech is showcasing a wireless charging and synchronization system for the iPhone 5 at this year's International Consumer Electronics Show. 

In a trend that appears to be mirroring the growth in the car industry for after-market modifications, a number of technology companies are rolling out high-tech accessories for the iPhone.

Following the launch of Wireless Dynamic's iCarte cover-cum-adaptor that brings NFC and RFID payment capabilities to the handset, and rapper and tech entrepreneur Will.i.am's i.am+ range of add-ons that turn the once slim, streamlined and pocket-sized iPhone 4S into a 16MP gold-plated photo-taking behemoth, BuQu Tech's Magnetyze Magnetic Charging System brings wireless charging and synchcronization technology to Apple's latest flagship smartphone handset. "It's the ideal solution for individuals and families on the go who appreciate being able to share a charger with others and saying goodbye to the hassles and expense of purchasing new charging devices or other accessories every time they upgrade," said Ophir Marsh, CEO, BuQu Tech.

Scheduled for pre-order in early Q2, the Magnetyze Magnetic Charging System works via a specially-made protective cover for the handset that will allow the phone to sit in a Magnetyze desk stand which enables wireless charging and synchronization. The company launched the Magnetyze system for iPhone 4 and 4s in 2012.

As a technology, wireless charging has been winning many admirers over recent months, and wireless charging points are starting to appear at US airports and across the Starbucks chain of coffee shops. When Nokia launched its flagship Windows 8 phone in November, the Lumia 920, it came with integrated wireless charging capabilities as did Google's Nexus 4 handset when it was officially launched in the same month.

However, while there are clear benefits to wireless charging -- no need to carry around charging cables and no need to worry about running out of power -- there are also drawbacks, the chief among them being that there are currently two competing wireless charging standards, both vying to be the de-facto global default. The standard proposed by the Power Matters Alliance, a consortium formed in 2012, is supported by Google, AT&T and Starbucks while the standard proposed by the much older Wireless Power Consortium (established in 2008) is backed by Samsung, Nokia, HTC and France Telecom among others. Both are committed to furthering the technology and developing a supporting ecosystem but whether or not there is room in the world for two opposing approaches to the same potential problem remains to be seen.

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