You can count on Apple to try and patent everything that moves, which apparently also includes electricity. Apple’s latest claim to court is that it has improved on Wireless charging and should therefore be awarded a patent for its new charging method. Apple’s charging technique claims to use magnetic resonance to be able to charge devices from a distance (several feet away); effectively losing the need for the phone to be in contact with the charger.
As far as an idea goes I honestly think that it is a decent improvement and a worthwhile one, something Apple have a habit of doing, which involves waiting to see what’s “hot” in the mobile world, then adding their own touch of pzaz to it. Sometimes they actually put some work into their “innovations” (like their original app store and being one of the first capacitive touch screens), and other times it’s just a process of tactical re-branding (like Facetime).
As far as I could gather (I might be misreading this) but the company behind the inductive wireless charging, that’s seen in the 920, touchpad, GS3 and everything else that uses the Qi standard, WiPower; was later acquired by Qualcomm and Samsung as well as a bunch of other companies forming the Alliance of Wireless Power (which I can only assume have licensed the Wireless charging technology to Nokia). This Alliance also have a patent on remote wireless charging (no need for contact with a pad)- which although the patent was filed after Apple’s the conflict arises if Apple can get the rights as a separate invention, rather than one based off the inductive charging.
Regardless of who is in the wrong here, this only shows that Apple has something planned with Wireless charging, and you can bet your last dollar that they’ll advertise it a lot more than a couple online comics (regardless of how cute they are). My only hope is that Nokia can get a foothold, as the people who brought wireless charging to the masses after everyone had forgot about it, rather than ending up as a second “face-time fiasco” where half the population believed that no phone had video chat before the iPhone (when even my N73 had it).