Bloomberg’s Mark Gurman reports in his latest piece reviewing Aira, a startup aiming to take on the wireless charger market that Apple is developing a “less ambitious” version of AirPower, a product canceled in 2017.
More than a year after AirPower’s demise, Apple is developing a less ambitious wireless charger for the iPhone. But while the Silicon Valley giant works on that product, Aira Inc., a startup based in Chandler, Arizona, this week is rolling out a technology called FreePower that aims to deliver on the original promise of AirPower, and works for devices from different manufacturers, including those from Google and Samsung Electronics Co. — not just Apple.Bloomberg
Rumors and speculation that AirPower is coming back have been in wide circulation recently in large part thanks to Jon Prosser. The reporting from Bloomberg casts high doubt that Apple will release the same product it featured in 2017, with the same features. Apple touted AirPower as the all in one charger for your iPhone, Apple Watch.
As Bloomberg reported at the time the product was canceled, the engineering team ran into issues with devices overheating. Jon Prosser says that Apple engineers are reworking internal coils to resolve this. As Bloomberg reported in March of 2019,
Apple didn’t say why exactly the product was canceled, but people familiar with its development told Bloomberg News last year that the company faced challenges with the software, overheating and the ability to charge multiple devices on any spot on the mat.Bloomberg
While today’s report doesn’t provide any specifics, a “less ambitious’ version would entail one of two things. Firstly, the ability to charge fewer devices at once, perhaps only the iPhone and Apple Watch or AirPods. Or, second, charging at a slower rate than originally planned.