AirPower was announced together with iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X on Apple's September event … in 2017. It was a preview, not a release, and Apple said it would only be available in 2018. Since then has the iPhone X come and gone and another September event with it. Now it's November 2018 – the end of November – and AirPower is stillhere to be found.
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2017: AirPower Year Zero
Recently, when Apple makes a big change, it likes to announce a big halo product to go with it. The best example is AirPods. iPhone 7 may have pulled the headphone jack, but it gave us one of the most innovative consumer electronics we've seen in recent years. Custom W1 chips – Small computers that allow instant pairing, switch between connected devices and solid sync of left and right stone, no cables required.
They were announced in the September 2016 event, which will come later. Apple even gave pre-release versions to reviewers to test, so they could get the complete iPhone 7 and Apple Watch Series 2 experience. They ended up shipment late after a few months. Available for ordering December 16th and in store by December 20th.
AirPower was probably meant to be similar if not the same. iPhone 8, 8 Plus and iPhone X. They pushed the metal shades to glass and gave us Qi-based inductive charge. No innovation on its own – the phones have been inductive for a decade – but Apple seemed to want to show not only its commitment to technology, but its commitment to push it forward. It was AirPower. Not just an inductive pillow or capable of charging the new iPhones, but a super pillow capable of charging up to two iPhones, or an iPhone, an Apple Watch 3 or later, and even a few AirPods in one New, inductive charge case all their own.
It would change the story from Apple eventually join the inductive charging club of Apple to be Apple and make inductive charging on a slicker, smarter way than anyone earlier in the club.
They were not announced as coming later that year, but coming the following year. Short, spring of the following year on a website.
2018: AirPower Year One
Apple Post, February 7, 2018:
According to a Bestseller at American Retailer, Apple is preparing to launch the AirPower wireless charging mat and the new AirPod wireless charger in March, claiming that Best Buy will save AirPower from day one online and in stores.
Mac Otakara March 23, 2018:
Regarding information as reliable, in the same way, AirPower is said to be due to sell it in March and to Qi wireless charging with Apple Watch Series 3 on AirPower, It is detected with a special wave and it is possible to Qi wireless- Do not be right away when using the Apple Watch Magnetic Charging Cable.
Apple began launching the built-in AirPower wireless charger by the end of March
But the spring came and went, and the March event and the new 9.7-inch iPad with it. But no AirPower. Summer came and went too, and WWDC and iOS 12 with it. But still no AirPower.
Mark Gurman, writes for Bloomberg June 21, 2018:
Apple did not say that in 2018 it would release AirPower, but engineers hoped to launch the charger in June. The goal is now to put it on sale before or in September, according to one of the people. In recent months, some Apple engineers have hit the test of the device by using the one in the office, another person said.
AirPower remains on Apple's website, albeit just on the AirPods page and just referring to
Mark Gurman writes for Bloomber September 10, 2018:
AirPower Wireless Charger: This is Apple's charger that can simultaneously charge an iPhone, Apple Watch and AirPods without plugging them in. The company met developmental challenges, but plans to launch it as soon as this month, Bloomberg News reported earlier this year.
Fall came and went, and September and October events, new iPhones and iPads galore. But, yes, still no AirPower.
John Gruber, who writes for Daring Fireball September 15th:
What I've heard, third-hand but from several small birds, is that AirPower is really good and really fucked. Something about multi-spiral design gets too hot – too hot. There are engineers who looked at AirPower's design and said that it could never work, thermal, and now they have the same engineers who "told you so" smudges their faces. Last year, Apple was apparently weakened by arguments that they could figure out a way to make it not hot. They were obviously wrong. I think they either had to go back to the drawing board and start with a completely different design or they decided to give up and they just did not want to say that.
16. September, 2018, Sonny Dickson, previously known to find demo devices of pre-production iPhone and other devices from the Chinese supply chain, posted what he heard, continued with AirPower:
Currently, the device produces too much heat, which leads to performance setbacks, and may affect the device's ability to recharge if they become too hot in the process. It also affects the ability of Apple's Custom Charging Chip, which runs a removed version of iOS, to work properly.
The mechanism used for multi-device charging, which we can confirm, consists of between 21 and 24 power coils of different sizes to accommodate the three main products to be charged (AirPods equipped with so far non-existent battery charger accessories , iPhone and Apple Watch), which are divided into three identical charging groups, proves to be very difficult to build or refine and have resulted in a significant amount of interference up to this point, which reduces the efficiency of charge mats and contributes to the the heat problems faced by engineers.
On September 17, 2018, Binyamin Goldman wrote for Apple Toolbox:
According to two independent sources, Apple has discontinued AirPower as we know, and it will not appear on an event the company plans for October.
The decision to cancel the device was made during the past month and a half, and discussions on the next move have just begun.
People who are familiar with the project say that the company plans to start working with a less ambitious wireless launcher for launch in early 2019. It is currently unclear whether a future device will inherit AirPower moniker or the brand will be trash .
Apple Watch 4 came with a version of Milanese Loop that could be opened, apparently so that it could work with AirPower. It was undoubtedly planned in advance, though. However, with the launch of the iPhone XS and iPhone XR, AirPower was still on the documentation that came with in the packaging, which is much easier to replace much later in the release cycle, especially for the typically boring Apple.
Place iPhone facing up on AirPower or a Qi certified wireless charger.
According to Guilllermo Rambo, writing for 9to5Mac on September 20th, it was also in the code:
. In iOS 12.1, we saw that the component of IOS responsible for managing the charging interface displayed when using AirPower has been updated, which means that Apple is still actively working with the project.
On October 23, 2018, Kuo Ming-Chi reported, via MacRumors:
According to Kuo, Apple could launch new AirPods and AirPower either late in the fourth quarter of 2018 or early in the first quarter of 2019, but he still does not know the company's specific plans.
Apple has launched products in December ember before. AirPods, of course, in 2016, and the Smart Battery Case for iPhone 6s in 2015. But it's certainly not the norm. HomePod, announced on WWDC in June 2017, arrives later that year, then delayed early February 2018 after AirPlay 2 proved more challenging to nail than expected.
2019: AirPower Year Three
If a December launch is not in AirPower's cards and the lack of noise leading up to the last month of the year makes it seem more likely than early next year, be it February or March the next likely window.
If the project is really in trouble or even canceled, like the rumor, and another project with the same name or the like if it is not quickly simplified instead, then it may be longer.
"Great artists ship." "Apple ship." Is one of the core tenants of the company. But delays on everything from AirPods to HomePod, and most specifically, AirPower has put the tenant on trial. That's why there were no special halo accessories that were announced along with this year's iPhone or iPad. New Modular Mac Pro Returning In 2017, But Not Realizing: Apple has learned the dangers of deviating from the ship's non-narrative strategy, and pain it can cause them when the forecasts do not match the finish line.
Where is AirPower? I want to make you a better one: Why is AirPower?
AirPods challenged and changed our expectations when it came to how intuitive wireless headphones really could feel. Even at best, AirPower probably would not have done it for inductive charging. Not such ubiquity would. No way to have each table in each coffee shop and restaurant, ever fold in every trip part and fly, having inductive charge everywhere.
And it takes more than one charger that can handle a wide range of different devices. It will take a wide range of devices that can all be charged in the same way.