Chinese smartphone maker ZTE Corp. is investing 1.5 billion yuan (US$240 million) to develop wireless charging technology for vehicles in 2015.
It plans to invest another 2 billion yuan next year, Reuters reported Friday, citing a senior executive.
Corporate strategy director George Sun said the company signed agreements with more than 20 Chinese cities to provide wireless charging facilities for public transport.
“So far the feedback is very, very positive. We solved the biggest headache of electric car charging for local governments,” Sun said.
Chinese drivers have yet to widely adopt the use of electric vehicles despite years of government programs to support their development. Public transport is a notable exception.
Shenzhen-based ZTE will conduct pre-commercial trials for public transport in 50 to 100 Chinese cities in 2015, Sun said.
Also, it is in talks with several Chinese and foreign carmakers over possible collaboration.
Wireless charging saves space, allowing governments to install the technology in bus terminals or car parks, although the cost of wireless equipment is higher than traditional charging facilities.
In a renewed effort aimed at cutting heavy pollution, China has rolled out aggressive targets for vehicle fuel efficiency that will grow increasingly strict until 2020, at which time its standards will have surpassed those of the United States and be on roughly equal footing with Japan.
The government offers tax cuts for green vehicles and subsidies, mostly for domestic producers, to help automakers meet these targets.
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