So … Where's AirPower? | I more


AirPower was announced alongside the iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X at Apple's September event … in 2017. It was a preview, not a launch, and Apple said it would only be available in 2018. Since then, the iPhone X arrived and gone and another September event along with him. It's now November 2018 – the end of November – and AirPower is still a long way from being found.

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2017: AirPower Zero Year

Recently, when Apple makes a big change, it likes to announce a great halo product to follow. The best example is the AirPods. The iPhone 7 may have discarded the headset but gave us one of the most innovative consumer electronics we've seen in years. Custom W1 chips – tiny computers that allow instant pairing, switching between paired devices and solid synchronization between left and right, with no need for cables.

They were announced during the September 2016 event, as predicted later that fall. Apple even provided pre-release versions for reviewers to test, so they could have the full experience of the iPhone 7 and Apple Watch Series 2. They ended up delaying shipping for a few months. Available for order on December 16th and in stores until December 20th.

AirPower should probably be similar, if not the same. iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X. They abandoned the glass covers and gave us inductive load based on Qi. Nothing groundbreaking on its own – the phones have been inducing inductively a decade ago – but Apple seemed to want to show not only its commitment to technology but its commitment to carry on. That was AirPower. Not just a pad or inductive stand capable of loading the new iPhones, but a super-pad capable of loading up to two iPhones or an iPhone, an Apple Watch 3 or later, and even a couple of AirPods in a new inductive load. case all their own.

That would change Apple's narrative by finally joining Apple's inductive charging club, Apple being and inductively charging in a smarter way than anyone else at the club.

They were not advertised as coming later that year, but as arriving the following year. Briefly, spring the following year on a web page. But in all other places – and eventually an updated version of that page too – simply next year.

2018: AirPower Year One

The Apple Post, February 7, 2018:

According to a specialist from US retailer Best Buy, Apple is preparing to launch the AirPower wireless charging carpet and the new AirPods wireless charging case in March, claiming that Best Buy will stock AirPower from day one online and in the store.

Mac Otakara on March 23, 2018:

In relation to this, as reliable information, similarly, AirPower is said to sell it in March and for Qi wireless-load with Apple Watch Series 3 on AirPower, it is detected with a special wave and is possible for Qi wireless- charge as the same when the magnetic charging cable Apple Watch is used.

With Apple Ready to Launch AirPower by the End of March

But spring came and went, and the March event and the new iPad of 9.7 inches with it. But no airpower. Summer has come and gone too, and WWDC and iOS 12, too. But there is still no AirPower.

Mark Gurman, writing to Bloomberg on June 21, 2018:

Apple did not say when it would launch AirPower in 2018, but engineers hoped to launch the shipper by June. The goal now is to put it up for sale before or in September, according to one of the people. In recent months, some Apple engineers have upped the device testing using it as a charger in the office, someone else said.

AirPower still remained on Apple's website, though only on the AirPods page and only in reference to the currently unavailable wireless upload case.

Mark Gurman writing for Bloomber on September 10, 2018:

AirPower Wireless Charger: This is the Apple charging keyboard that can simultaneously charge an iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods without connecting them. The company has faced development challenges, but plans to launch it later this month, Bloomberg News reported earlier this year.

The fall came and went, and the events of September and October, new iPhones and iPads galore. But yes, there is no AirPower yet.

John Gruber, writing for Daring Fireball on September 15:

What I heard, in third hand, but of several small birds, is that the AirPower really is well and truly fucked. Something about the multi-coil design getting too hot – too hot. There are engineers who have analyzed the AirPower project and said that it could never work, thermally, and now those same engineers have that "right" look on their faces. Last year, Apple was apparently influenced by arguments that they could figure out a way to not get hot. They were clearly wrong. I think they had to go back completely to the drawing board and start over with a completely different design, or they decided to give it up and they just do not want to say it.

On September 16, 2018, Sonny Dickson, formerly known for finding iPhone pre-production demonstration units and other devices from the Chinese supply chain, posted what he heard about AirPower:

The device currently produces a lot of heat, which causes setbacks in performance and can affect the ability of charging devices if they become too hot in the process. This also affects the ability of Apple's custom charging chip, which runs a simplified version of iOS, to work as intended.

The mechanism being used for multi-device charging, which we can confirm, consists of 21 to 24 coils of various sizes to accommodate the three main products to be loaded (AirPods equipped with a box of wireless charging accessories until now nonexistent ). iPhone, and Apple Watch), which are divided into three identical collection groups, is proving to be extremely difficult to build or refine, and has resulted in a significant amount of interference so far, which reduces the efficiency of the loading conveyor and contributes for the heat problems that engineers are facing.

On September 17, 2018, Binyamin Goldman wrote to the Apple Toolbox:

According to two independent sources, Apple canceled AirPower as we know it, and will not appear at an event the company is planning for October.
The decision to cancel the device was taken in the past month and a half, and discussions about the next step have only recently begun.

People familiar with the project said the company plans to start working on a less ambitious wireless charging accessory for launch in early 2019. It is currently unclear whether a future device will inherit the AirPower nickname or whether the brand will be discarded.

Apple Watch 4 came with a version of the Milanese Loop that could be opened, apparently to work with AirPower. This was undoubtedly planned well in advance, though. But with the release of the iPhone XS and the XR iPhone, however, AirPower remained in the documentation included in the packaging, something much easier to change much later in the launch cycle, especially for Apple's normally picky one.


Place the iPhone with the screen facing up into the AirPower or into a Qi-certified wireless charger.

According to Guillermo Rambo, writing for 9to5Mac on September 20, he also remained in the code:

Looking at iOS 12.1, we noticed that the iOS component responsible for managing the charging interface that appears when using AirPower has been updated, which means that Apple is still actively working on the project.

On October 23, 2018, Kuo Ming-Chi reported, via MacRumors:

According to Kuo, Apple may launch new AirPods and AirPower at the end of the fourth quarter of 2018 or the beginning of the first quarter of 2019, but it is not yet aware of the company's specific plans.

Apple launched products in December before. AirPods, of course, in 2016, and the Smart Battery Case for iPhone 6s in 2015. But it's certainly not the norm. HomePod, which was announced at WWDC in June 2017 as scheduled later that year, was delayed in early February 2018 after AirPlay 2 proved more challenging than initially expected.

2019: AirPower Year Three

If a December release is not on the cards for AirPower, and the lack of noise that precedes the last month of the year makes this seem increasingly likely, be it early next year, be it February or March is the next window likely.

If the project really is in trouble or even canceled, as rumors say, and another project with the same name or for a similar purpose, although simpler, is not rapidly expanded, then it can be much longer.

"Great ships of artists." "Apple Ships" It is one of the main tenants of the company. But delays in everything from AirPods to HomePod, and especially AirPower, have put that tenant to the test. Maybe that's why no special aural accessories were announced next to this year's iPhone or iPad. The new modular Mac Pro was released in 2017, however: Apple learned the dangers of straying from its strategy of saying nothing pain that it can cause when predictions do not match the finish lines.

Where is AirPower? I'll do better: Why AirPower?

The AirPods challenged and changed our expectations when it came to how intangible wireless headphones really could be felt. Even at its best, AirPower probably would not have done it for inductive charging. It's not the way ubiquity would be. Not the way to have all the tables in all the cafes and restaurants, always everywhere and airplanes, making the inductive loading go anywhere.

And this will require more than one charger capable of handling a wide variety of different devices. This will require a wide variety of devices that can be charged in the same way.

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