Gurman: Apple is still working on a ‘multi-device’ wireless charger

The rumor: Apple is still working on an AirPower-like charging device years after officially canceling the product, according to Mark Gurman (87% accurate, via Power On).

  • “I do think Apple is still working on some sort of multi-device charger that it intends to eventually release. There’s a reason why it planned to launch the device in the first place in 2017” Gurman says
  • Apple is also reportedly working on short and long-range wireless charging…like iPad being able to charge iPhone

Our take: We’ve been hearing about this AirPower follow-up for years…but still nothing palpable has come of the rumors. Not to mention that Apple sells MagSafe duo already. I would love a nice-looking 3-1 charger with Apple’s first-party tech: I’m just not convinced it’s happening.

New video shows AirPower prototype in action

The leak: A working prototype of the fateful AirPower wireless charging mat has surfaced in a new video, shared by collector Giulio Zompetti.

  • In the new video, you can see how AirPower would have worked when placing a device on the charging mat, complete with a 3D animation of the device placed and overview of all currently charging devices
  • Apple canceled AirPower in March 2019 after announcing it at the iPhone X event in September 2017 and numerous delays

Our take: This is the first time we’ve ever seen a functional AirPower prototype in the wild. Truly, this would’ve been an incredibly device and although the initial version didn’t meet Apple’s quality standards, there are rumors that something similar is still in the works. I hope something like this sees the light of day eventually.

Apple is still working on a new version of AirPower

The rumor: Years after Apple publicly canceled their AirPower wireless charging mat, a successor is still being worked on, according to Mark Gurman (88.7% accurate, via Bloomberg).

  • “The Cupertino company is still exploring a future wireless charger that works similarly to its failed AirPower, a charging mat designed to simultaneously power up an iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods, the people said.”
  • In addition to a new inductive wirelsss charing product, Apple is also exploring longer-range charging solutions…but Gurman notes that technology is still “likely several years away”

Our take: I can’t believe that we’re still referencing AirPower more than two years after it was canned. That being said, I’d love to see the original vision come back to life at some point. It’s just that with the introduction of MagSafe, a place-anwhere-and-it-charges solution doesn’t make as much sense now.

AirPower is reportedly, actually, finally dead

The rumor: After rumors reignited a few months back about AirPower still being worked on at Apple, Jon Prosser (85.5% accurate) has provided an update on the state of the project.

  • AirPower’s development has apparently been ‘removed from the schedule for 2021.’
  • Prosser adds that sources he’s spoken with have low confidence in any future revival
  • Prior leaks suggested Apple was still problem-solving the canceled product

Our take: As soon as I saw MagSafe announced earlier this month, I knew AirPower’s fate in my heart. The idea—a mat where you can just lay your stuff on it (anywhere) and it’s fully charged the next day—is beautiful. And AirPower was beautiful. But it’s time to move on to MagSafe, which is entirely different, but still cool enough.

Apple is still working on a new version of AirPower

The rumor: Well over a year after AirPower was officially canceled, the company continues to work on making the wireless charging mat happen in some capacity, according to Mark Gurman (86.7% accurate).

  • Following technical issues with the original version of AirPower, Gurman reports that “Apple is developing a less ambitious wireless charger for the iPhone”
  • Both Jon Prosser (77.8% accurate) and L0vetodream (89.2% accurate) have reported the same thing

Our take: I can’t explain why, but AirPower (in some form or another) is still something I really want to see. It’s almost completely irrational because it’s literally just a wireless charger…but there’s something about the animations in the original teaser trailer that would make the wireless charging experience ever-so-slightly better.

First look at original AirPower prototype

The news: Our first ever hands-on images of an AirPower prototype have surfaced on video-sharing site bilibili and noticed by Mr.white (25% accurate).

  • There are layers of copper coils stacked on top of each other, likely leading to excess heating and ultimately resulting in the product’s cancellation
  • Above the coils sits a keyboard-esque looking aluminum panel with cutouts of complex circuitry
  • A Lightning connector was present on the device, as well

Our take: The original AirPower certainly would’ve been an engineering marvel. I’m curious to see how things turn out for the second version reportedly in the works…