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Oppo amplifies charging capabilities at MWC Shanghai

Needing to leave your phone on a wireless charging pad may be a thing of the past, as Oppo shows something giving you a little bit of room.

Mobile World Congress isn’t quite in Spain in February, starting the year of phones off in Shanghai instead. That’s what the “MWCS” initialism is you might be seeing about the place, but it’s just plain old MWC for us, fresh from when it was all cancelled last year, and you know why — thanks, coronavirus.

But the first announcement from MWC this year isn’t on a phone as such, but rather what could be coming to phones, as Oppo shows off an update to a charging technology. It’s not the VOOC high-speed tech that it talks about often, though it has some news there, too.

Rather, Oppo is showing off what we can expect for wireless charging in the time ahead, with a slightly different take on the tech, using a variant that can charge devices up to 10 centimetres away, basically meaning you can hold a phone over a charging pad rather than resting it on top.

It’s something Oppo calls “Wireless Air Charging”, and could mean that you’ll be able to keep using your phone while it charges wirelessly, compared to how wireless charging currently works, which basically means leaving it on a pad or standing against one, hardly a position where you can actively use it. The company demonstrated it on its upcoming “rollable” phone where the screen rolls out of place from the body, extending the screen to become bigger.

Oppo’s addition to wireless charging could be some time off, but it’s also working on its high-speed and high-power wired charging technologies, partnering with a few other brands, including Anker which will bring Oppo’s Vooc technology to more accessories, plus Volkswagen vehicles made in China as part of a collaboration between FAW-Volkswagen and Oppo.

Some of those accessories could included gadgets launched last year, including a 50 watt mini charger that can charge both phones and laptops, and a crazy big 125 watt charger that can charge a phone in less than half an hour. Given the power inside, we wouldn’t be surprised to learn if they’re based on Gallium Nitride (GaN), a technology that started to roll out last year and runs much cooler than silicon, basically allowing for powerful chargers to be made smaller.

Whether or not Oppo is using GaN or not, the developments being shown at Mobile World Congress Shanghai are definitely based around power, and suggest that regardless of what Oppo releases this year, there’s a good chance that the power needs will definitely be considered.

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