Updated: April 11, 2020 10:38:50 am
It seems that Apple’s AirPower is coming back from the dead. According to YouTuber Jon Prosser claims, the company has already started working on the project internally. In fact, Prosser has shared an image of what is an early prototype of the wireless charging mat.
According to Prosser, Apple is reportedly sending prototype units of the charging mat to the home of some employees in the company’s ‘Sharing and Proximity’ team. The device is internally known as “C68” and looks identical to the original AirPower that was cancelled last year.
The new version uses Apple’s A11 chipset to address the overheating issues Apple had in the past. “Because the Apple Watch uses a tweaked proprietary charging method, it requires more energy to charge,” says Prosser. “In previous prototypes, if you placed an Apple Watch on the mat alongside other devices, the entire mat would overheat, and in most cases, combust.”
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Apple showed the AirPower wireless charging may during the launch of iPhone X in September 2017 and had planned to launch in 2018. AirPower was designed to charge three devices including your iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods at the same time.
While working from home, engineers on Apple’s ‘Sharing and Proximity’ team are receiving prototype units of something called “C68“.
They are being asked work on software communication between devices for a “future product” that has an A11 inside to “dynamically manage heat”. pic.twitter.com/q4UvnF4ksx
— Jon Prosser (@jon_prosser) April 10, 2020
However, Apple decided to scarp the AirPower charging mat citing technical issues. “After much effort, we’ve concluded AirPower will not achieve our high standards and we have cancelled the project. We apologize to those customers who were looking forward to this launch. We continue to believe that the future is wireless and are committed to push the wireless experience forward,” said Dan Riccio, Apple’s senior vice president of Hardware Engineering in a statement to TechCrunch.
Over the past few months, rumours of Apple reviving the AirPower have increased. Apple analyst Ming Chi-Kuo of TF International Securities believes Apple will launch a “smaller wireless charging mat” sometime in the first half of 2020.
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