AirPower Is Dead by@moimaere

AirPower Is Dead

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The Death of AirPower Explained

Apple has now officially cancelled the AirPower wireless charging pad. It’s dead. The project is over. There is no replacement. It’s done! Also, it’s so bizarre just because it didn’t have to be a big deal at all — it’s just wireless charging, in theory. However, it became this big deal because of the way things played out, and because of what AirPower was supposed to be.

So AirPower was originally announced way back with the iPhone 10, back two years ago in 2017 and it was supposed to be wireless charging that in white. You’ve probably seen pictures of it that would charge the iPhone the AirPods and your Apple Watch all at the same time. It was made by Apple other third-party stuff couldn’t do this, but it would have this sweet iOS integration where it would show the charging percentage of all the things on the pad all on iOS on the iPhone. So it’ll be this pretty nifty solution for people who owned all three things.

In September 2017, they said AirPower would be in markets next year (2018). All of 2018 past, we kind of held our breaths, and nothing happened. At these Apple events, you know there’s typically a hands-on area where if they announce new products that’s where you can get your first time to get footage of it. AirPower was also in that hands-on area. However, if you go back and look at those videos from 2017 people were in there, people were recording it, but nobody was able to get anything to work. People were using AirPower in their videos, putting things on the pad and they weren’t charging.

So that was maybe the first sign things weren’t exactly going to plan. So a couple of weeks go by a couple of months go by, and eventually were getting into 2018, and people start to wonder. As we don’t hear anything when AirPower is coming out, is it going to be with a new product, alongside something else is going to be its own separate thing or they’re just going to silently put it on sale. And then slowly, one by one, piece by piece Apple started to remove AirPower from their site. They removed the official listing. They removed references to it from other listings, they just slowly started to erase AirPower from the internet.

However, as you know, you can’t erase something from the internet. It has the opposite effect. So, when that started happening, everyone started finding that and writing articles about any last traces of anywhere you could find AirPower.

Up until a couple of days ago when they just started shipping AirPods 2 in those wireless charging cases, AirPower was still mentioned on the box. Also, if you buy even to this day AirPods wireless charging case, there’s a diagram of AirPower on the back of it.

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So, every time someone found something like this or some updated code in iOS that mentioned AirPower there would be some little glimmer of hope that maybe we’re going to see this product, but also hopes were dashed every time.

Then in September of 2018, so a whole year after the announcement, people still wondering where it was. John Gruber, who is incredible, and a noted Apple insider, wrote on his site:

“What I’ve heard, third-hand but for multiple little birdies, is that AirPower really is well and truly f*cked. Something about the multi-coil design getting too hot -way too hot. There are engineers who looked at AirPower’s original design and said it could never work, thermally, and now those engineers have that ‘told you so’ smug look on their faces. Last year Apple was apparently swayed by arguments that they could figure out a way to make it work without getting hot. They were, clearly, wrong.”

So that was one of many reports that seem to point to engineering problems with AirPower. So what is this multi-coil design, why is this such a problem? The big feature of AirPower was not just that it’s a wireless charging that for three things, but that you could place any one of these three things down anywhere on the pad and it would detect what it was and start charging.

Now I feel like we used a regular wireless charger before that process — with one-coil in the pad and one-coil on the phone — can be an awkward process of lining it up and getting it just right for it to start charging. And if it’s off or if you bump it and you wake up the next morning, and you’d bumped it off the coil, it wouldn’t have charged.

Some larger pads have had up to three-coils — three different hot spots for charging three different things at once. However, generally, Apple wanted to reinvent this way of wireless charging. They wanted to add their magic touch to it.

So there are comments now from people in this industry saying that AirPower was rumoured to have anywhere from 20 to 30 plus coils in that one pad that allowed for total XY freedom. So you could put it anywhere on the pad, and it would pick the nearest coil and be close enough to charge but 20 to 30 coils in one pad.

Thermal issues through that whole process and with that whole idea had it not working, it’s just too small of a space, and just Apple and thermals don’t seem to get along especially lately. Then, Apple had two options at that point, and this was last year but at this point, they could either change AirPower like you can’t have 20 to 30 coils in this small the space so you can change it or you can cancel it.

In March 2019, finally, Apple’s admitted this isn’t going to work. They’re not going to rebrand it; they’re not going to restructure this project. They cancelled it. Also, I guess that’s Apple like that they would instead cancel the whole project then make different wireless charging that.

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Nomad

Speaking of which there are plenty of other Qi wireless charging pads all over the internet. Like Nomad. Their wireless charging hub you can charge all three things at once. The Apple Watch kind of goes up top. However, you know, the same thing, it works, it’s not like a white orb or anything. But apparently, they went immediately out of stock of these as soon as that sort of news hit that AirPower wasn’t happening.

I don’t think that many people were going to buy AirPower. It’s not like a game changer for them. It’s not like they cancel the iPhone 11 or Mac Pro. I hope they don’t cancel the Mac Pro by the way. It wasn’t a huge deal because of how small the product it was. I think it would have been maybe $180, maybe around $200.

We could be mad at Apple for not shipping a product that they promised to ship. But we can also be glad that they didn’t ship something that would have been dangerous for thermal reasons, like a Samsung.

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