Daimler has been selling electric versions of its smart fortwo city car since 2012 (Photo: Daimler)
Daimler said it has joined forces with Qualcomm Technologies to explore wireless electric-vehicle charging.
In the first phase of the new cooperation, the maker of Mercedes-Benz cars and trucks will work with Qualcomm to improve 3G and 4G connectivity inside the car and investigate wireless charging possibilities.
Qualcomm is a wireless technology specialist with a leading position in 4G chips. The company has been developing systems to wirelessly charge electric vehicles.
Inductive charging, widely used for electric toothbrushes, is becoming more common with the new generation of smartphones. It could also greatly improve the relatively cumbersome process of charging EV batteries.
Daimler said in a press release that Qualcomm's Halo wireless electric vehicle charging (WEVC) technology, which provides relatively high performance and doesn't take up too much space, could be used for Mercedes full electric vehicles and plug-in hybrids.
"We are eager to jointly explore possible fields of future cooperation with an internationally leading tech-firm like Qualcomm,” Daimler's R&D chief, Thomas Weber, said in the press release.
Qualcomm said the cooperation with DaimlerÂ builds on connectivity systems the company has provided to the Mercedes AMG Petronas Formula One team. "Our work in motorsports cultivates the innovation and advancements seen in the auto space,” said Derek Aberle, president of Qualcomm.
Aberle said his vision is "to deliver in-car experiences comparable to the ease and convenience of smartphones.”