Will iPhone 8 Feature True Wireless Charging?

iPhone 8 Wireless Charging

It has been widely rumored that iPhone 8, iPhone X or whatever Apple ends up calling its 10th anniversary iPhone, will feature wireless charging.

Wireless charging has been available on Android-based smartphones for quite some time. In fact, one of the first smartphones to introduce wireless charging feature was Palm Pre back in 2009, which came with a wireless charger called Touchstone.

Wireless Charging seems a certainty based on the comments made by the CEO of iPhone assembler Wistron, who told reporters after the company’s annual shareholders’ meeting on Wednesday “Assembly process for the previous generations of [iPhones] have not changed much, though new features like waterproof and wireless charging now require some different testing, and waterproof function will alter the assembly process a bit”.

However, the wireless charging feature that is available currently is not truly wireless as the smartphone needs a physical contact with the charger.

So Apple does not use “wireless charging” while describing the charging method for the Apple Watch. Apple describes it as “magnetic charging” which is an accurate description of the method.

As John Gruber of Daring Fireball rightly points out, Merriam-Webster definition of wireless is as follows:

having no wire or wires; specifically: operating by means of transmitted electromagnetic waves a wireless remote

Unfortunately, based on John Gruber’s latest post it looks like the next iPhone will feature magnetic charging like the Apple Watch. It won’t offer true wireless charging, which would allow us to charge the iPhone over the air. He writes:

It sounds like this is what might be in store for the next iPhone. That’d be cool — but it wouldn’t be as cool as being able to charge over the air.

If we call inductive charging “wireless” now, what are we going to call it when it really is wireless in a few years?

I was expecting Apple to surprise us with the iPhone 8 by offering wireless charging that works like Wi-Fi which would be a lot superior to the method available currently. Startups like Energous which has been rumored to be working with Apple, offer true wireless charging feature that uses radio frequencies (RF) to charge devices at a distance.

While the magnetic charging feature is a lot more convenient than using the Lightning cable, it won’t have the same wow factor. It also remains to be seen if Apple will support the other wireless charging standards like Qi which is the most popular one and PMA.

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