Apple unveiled its AirPower wireless-charging mat at its iPhone event last year, promising a way for those with multiple Apple devices to be able to wirelessly charge them all at the same time. The company showed how an iPhone, an Apple Watch and a set of AirPods could all be tossed onto the mat to charge simultaneously, noting that AirPower would be available sometime in 2018. But a year later we still don't have it, and today as Apple showed off its latest round of iPhones and the Apple Watch Series 4, there was not a single mention of AirPower. And the device has largely disappeared from the company's website.
You can see an image of AirPower on Apple's AirPod page, and the device appears on the company's list of trademarks. But that's about it. Beyond not mentioning AirPower today, Apple didn't say anything about wireless charging in relation to its new iPhone models either. The company's silence on a device it was quite keen to show off a year ago is rather odd and could mean that AirPower has proven a bit more difficult to develop than Apple once expected.
AirPower must be well and truly fucked. No one at Apple will say a word about it, even off the record. And as a result they didn't even mention inductive charging during the event, even though the XS and XR both charge faster than the X.— John Gruber (@gruber) September 12th, 2018
There was already speculation that all was not right with AirPower earlier this year. Sources familiar with the matter told Bloomberg in June that technical issues had held up the device, with overheating, the need for multiple charging sensors and having to accommodate different kinds of devices on one mat causing problems for the company. ZDNet also reports today that experts in the accessories and charging side of the industry say AirPower, and what it aimed to do, was too ambitious. And because the company has implemented different wireless-charging protocols for the iPhone and Apple Watch, that complicated matters further.
AirPower's notable absence doesn't mean it's totally dead in the water, but if Apple's silence is anything to go by, it's not likely to be available anytime soon.
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