Apple’s new AirPower is a wireless charging pad to help clean
up the mess of charging cables for your iPhone, Apple Watch,
and AirPods. Apple unveiled AirPower at its iPhone X
Event, but the company didn’t provide much detail. We hope
to fill the void here. We’ll update this article as we get more
details, so stay tuned.
What is AirPower?
AirPower is a wireless charging pad. There are several wireless
charging pads on the market, but before the iPhone 8 and iPhone
X, you had to use a special case with your iPhone in order to
use a wireless charging pad.
AirPower works without the need of a special case. Just plop
your iPhone on to the AirPower pad, and it starts charging. No
need to plug in your iPhone.
How does the AirPower work?
Place the AirPower pad on your desk or wherever you like to
charge your devices. Then plug it into a power outlet. To
charge your device, just place it on the mat, with front facing
up. That’s it.
To get a little but more technical, AirPower uses
induction, where an electromagnetic field is used to
transfer power from (in this case) the AirPower to a device.
When you place your device on the AirPower, it receives a
signal from the pad to basically ‘handshake” with the device
(checks for compatibility, charge capacity, etc). If everything
checks out, charging proceeds.
Can my iPhone work with AirPower?
Only three iPhones work with AirPower: iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus,
and iPhone X. These iPhones not only have glass backs (as
opposed to the aluminum backs of the iPhone 6 and 7), but they
also have the hardware support to charge wirelessly.
Can my iPad work with AirPower?
The current iPads (as of September 2017) are not compatible
with AirPower. It seems as though a glass back is required, and
a glass back as big as one for the iPad would be expensive,
heavy, and perhaps too fragile to use.
Can my AirPods work with AirPower?
They can, but you need the new AirPod case that Apple
introduced at the iPhone X Event. You can’t use the original
case with the AirPower. Nor can you simply place your AirPod
earbuds on the AirPower to charge them. You have to place the
earbuds in the new case, and then place the case on the
AirPower. Or you can charge the case on the AirPower, take
the case off the pad, and then put the AirPods in the case to
Apple has not release details on the new AirPod case. As of
this writing, the new case isn’t on the company’s website.
Can my MacBook laptop work with AirPower?
No. AirPower is designed to work with the iPhone 8, iPhone 8
Plus, iPhone X, Apple Watch Series 3, and the new AirPods case.
Can my Beats earphones work with AirPower?
No. See previous answer.
Can my non-Apple Qi-compliant device work with AirPower?
Apple said it was working on the AirPower to be Qi-compliant,
and if/when this happens, this could mean compatibility with
non-Apple Qi-compliant products. But we don’t have confirmation
yet. The iPhone 8 and iPhone X are compatible with
wireless charging standard and can be used with Qi
chargers like the Belkin
Boost Up ($59.95 on Amazon) or the Mophie
Can the AirPower fast-charge my iPhone?
Apple has not released specifications on AirPower, which would
include the charging rate that the AirPower works at.
The Qi specification supports fast charging at
15 watts. The rate at which AirPower works at has not been
disclosed. So it remains to be seen if it can support fast
How much is AirPower?
Apple has not released price information about AirPower.
When will AirPower be available?
Apple said that AirPower will be available in 2018.