iphone 12 – Here’s An AirPower Video Reminder Of The Wireless iPhone Charger You Can’t Buy
The ill-fated AirPower charging mat has once again popped up online. This time, the Apple device appears as a working prototype in a video.
The saga of the AirPower wireless charging mat has been an interesting one, and the latest chapter to Apple‘s doomed project involves a video showcasing a working prototype. Apple originally announced the AirPower back in 2017 alongside the iPhone 8 series, but it never hit the shelves. The charging accessory was even rumored to have entered production at Luxshare Precision — the same company which also makes AirPods and some cords as well — back in 2019, but that report also turned out to be nothing more than speculation.
Interestingly, in 2019, the retail package of AirPods wireless charging case for some users came with a schematic depicting the AirPower mat. In the same year, a product image of the wireless charging mat appeared on Apple’s Australian website too, giving eager fans more hope. However, it all came crashing down when Apple confirmed that it was canceling the project altogether, due to the device not meeting the high product standards that the company strives to achieve. Of course, that hasn’t stopped more details of the ill-fated gadget from surfacing online, time and again.
The latest addition to the AirPower info drip saga is an alleged hands-on video of a prototype AirPower unit. The video, which comes courtesy of Apple prototype device collector Giulio Zompetti, shows the device charging an iPhone. Going by the video, it appears that putting a compatible iPhone on the charging mat would have shown a special wireless charging animation in which the on-screen phone appears to pick the default wallpaper of the real phone. Sharing more details with The Verge, Zompetti revealed that the prototype AirPower mat was sourced from an e-waste channel in China.
Additional images shared by the collector also provides a glimpse of the internals. The charging mat is said to feature a stainless steel chassis with a total of 22 charging coils on the upper side, and an equal number of controller circuits on the bottom. The circuit layout suggests that the charging coils were also uniformly distributed on the top surface, which means users could just place an iPhone, Apple Watch, or AirPods case anywhere on the mat and the device would be juiced up. The key idea was to end the hassle of finding a charging sweet spot. However, it appears that the prototype was not meant to work with production devices, and only kicked into action with prototype iPhone units. Zompetti claims two prototype devices were able to be charged at the same time.
Apple reportedly pulled the plugs on AirPower due to heating issues, a problem that is not unheard of with wireless charging tech in general. Since the cancellation of AirPower, Apple appears to have moved on with the new MagSafe magnetic wireless charging system. After debuting it with the iPhone 12 series, Apple has created a whole ecosystem of MagSafe products and will likely expand the solution in the years to come. While AirPower is dead, brands like Nomad and Xiaomi have created wireless charging pads that fill the gap left by Apple’s unreleased charging accessory.
Next: Increasing iPhone Battery Life – How Apple Will Make New iPhones Last Longer
Source: Giulio Zompetti/Twitter, The Verge
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