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AirPower didn't work. So Apple might try again

by Alexis Timmons (2020-02-20)

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id="article-body" class="row" section="article-body"> Apple may be gearing up to release a wireless charging pad to replace AirPower (RIP). On this week's Apple Core roundup, we dive into a report that says this new charging pad could appear in the first half of 2020, potentially alongside the iPhone 9 or iPhone SE 2.

Is AirPower coming back?
Considering Apple canceled the project in 2019, it seems highly unlikely. A report from 9to5Mac quoting analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, tour chùa ba vàng however, says Apple may be preparing a smaller wireless charging mat. Rather than charging multiple devices simultaneously like AirPower promised, this Qi pad would likely charge one device at a time. So that means you could juice up your AirPods or AirPods Pro (in the wireless charging case) and the iPhone, but not simultaneously.

AirPower promised to charge three devices at once, wirelessly. It was canceled in 2019.

Apple What remains unclear at the moment is how the Apple Watch, our chùa yên tử which uses a proprietary magnetic charger, would potentially work with this mystery charging pad. Kuo didn't provide any additional details in the report. Back when AirPower was still a thing, it promised to charge not only the iPhone and AirPods on its flat surface, but also the Apple Watch. There's no telling yet how this other smaller charging mat would handle the Watch.

Some third-party AirPower alternatives use a separate holder to charge the Apple Watch, rather than having it lay flat on the mat.

Kuo also expects other Apple products to arrive in the first half of 2020: 

iPhone SE 2 aka iPhone 9

A new iPad Pro and a new MacBook

Small Bluetooth trackers, referred to as AirTags in iOS code (and the possible real reason behind Apple's recent U1 chip), to locate lost items

High-end headphones
Headphones are an interesting prediction, as Apple already owns Beats, which recently released the Beats Solo Pro. Apple, however, doesn't have its own branded over-ear line of headphones, as it does with the AirPods earbuds. 

The ultimate iPhone accessory might be a MacBook-like dock
The original PowerBook Duo.

CNET A new patent granted to Apple this week (and first filed in 2017) shows a design for an iPhone and iPad accessory that looks just like a MacBook. Patently Apple uncovered diagrams that let you drop a phone or tablet into the housing. You can then use its external keyboard and larger display for an iPhone, or keyboard and tour chùa ba vàng touchscreen for an iPad.

This is similar to Razer's Project Linda concept from 2018. Although it never came to market, this 13-inch laptop housing was powered by a Razer phone that slotted in right underneath the keyboard. 

Before that, Apple tried a dockable design decades earlier. The PowerBook Duo from 1992 was a laptop you could attach to a variety of different docks.

Realistically, what could a MacBook-style "dock" really be used for? A few weeks ago, we covered rumors about the 2021 iPhone becoming entirely portless. Maybe this new accessory could effectively add those ports back so you could backup the phone when it's docked, or let you attach wired accessories like headphones.

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