Apple unveiled new, highly anticipated models of their existing devices at the Steve Jobs Theater on Tuesday. Amid fervid discussion about the new iPhones 8, 8 Plus, and X, perhaps one of its most exciting new products is its charging mat, a one-stop charging device that will able to juice up the iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods. For those wondering about this new charger, you might be curious about how much an AirPower costs. Unfortunately you'll have to wait as pricing for the AirPower has not been revealed yet.
"We once said the future is wireless."
The AirPower is not a device that current charging standards support, and it's supposed to come sometime "next year," the company announced on Tuesday. According to the sneak peek, the AirPower will look like a somewhat large oval pad that can charge the iPhones 8, 8 Plus, and X, and can snugly fit any one of the new iPhones on at the same time as the Apple Watch and AirPod. While Qi wireless charging support is new to the iPhone family, it's already been standardized for Samsung devices.
In meantime, before the 2018 launch of the AirPower, Apple will sell Belkin and Mophie charging pads in their stores. Both the Belkin and Mophie wireless charging pads go for about $40 in their own respective stores.
The main perk about the Apple AirPower accessory that sets it apart from other wireless charging pads is that it would allow for multiple devices per pad and simultaneous charging. Charging pads usually require specific placement of the device, so we'll have to see how finicky the AirPower will be when it arrives.
The company says that all Qi-certified products support the iPhone. Qi wireless charging stations have already been popping up in restaurants, shops, and public places. In an increasingly connected and cellphone-oriented world, wireless charging allows people to stay efficiently connected on all their digital devices without the hassle of entangled cables. As Phil Schiller, senior vice president of worldwide marketing at Apple, declared at Tuesday's product launch event: "We once said the future is wireless."
Schiller previously talked about being at the start of a wireless future when promoting AirPods, Apple's wireless earbuds that use Bluetooth technology. Critics complained the AirPods would fall out while running or doing daily activities, which can be an expensive loss considering their $159 price tag.
The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus have a a lightning port, but will not be bringing back the headphone port. But eventually even the lightning port could go one day. Some tech commentators have speculated that Apple is actually moving toward becoming completely wireless. After all, is a charging pod truly wireless if the pod is plugged in?
The AirPower was one of multiple new products Apple presented at its demonstration to the media on Tuesday, among the latest edition of the Apple Watch, iPhones 8 and 8 Plus, and finally the big scene stealer — the iPhone X, in honor of the iPhone's 10th anniversary. All three phones feature the new glass design, although the iPhones 8 and 8 Plus are significantly cheaper than the $1,000 price tag on the iPhone X.
The iPhones 8 and 8 Plus are the same size as the iPhone 7 and 7 Plus, and still features the home button. Apple's flagship product the iPhone X features all-glass, 5.8-inch OLED screen with no bezels, the area of the phone that's not used for the display screen. Edge-to-edge screens aren't new, but it's a first for Apple. In other words, Apple designed a bigger screen, but not a bigger phone with the iPhone X.