When the new year begins in the Pacific, where Apple's Cupertino headquarters are based, the AirPower charging mat has officially missed the 2018 release window.
The barn mat promised to charge the iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods on a single compact mat with flexibility on where devices can be placed. However, the product has been rumored to have met internal development challenges as late as summer, which prevented Apple from bringing the product to market as smoothly as expected.
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The AirPower mat separated from standard single-device Qi charging mats in several ways. Most significantly, Apple announced that the mat could recharge a clock, an AirPod and an iPhone – and also supports an alternative configuration where the math charges two iPhones simultaneously.
The AirPower carpet will also coordinate with its charging iOS devices to display charging percentages on the iPhone lock screen.
How to show Apple SVP Phil Schiller carpet at the iPhone X event in September 2017:
We hope people love it, that it encourages others to create more advanced technology-based solutions like this. We will work with the Qi standard team to incorporate these benefits in the future for the standards to make wireless charging better for everyone. Then look for the AirPower charger next year.
Clearly, Apple did not launch carpet in 2018, and the Qi standard has not seen any contribution to date by Apple on how to charge multiple devices at once, without clear sweet spots for where the devices must be located. Apple is also yet nailing down the availability of AirPod's wireless charging case.
Apart from accessibility, Apple has also been a mum on pricing. At this point, it is not clear whether AirPower has been canceled completely or is still expected to debut once soon. By the end of last year, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo was certain that the product could be released in the first quarter.
Unusually, Apple has not made a statement about tapping an update on AirPower's status. Apple refused to recognize the product at its events in September and October, and did not respond to comment requests at the end of December. The product therefore comes into 2019 still in limbo.