Apple Inc. is working on a wireless charging technology with partners that would make it easier to charge iPhones and iPads from a distance, a Bloomberg report says.
Bloomberg guessed that the “cutting-edge” charging tech could appear in Apple devices released next year, so that would rule it out of making its way into the upcoming iPhone 7, which is expected to arrive later this year.
It is however unclear what approach Apple and its partners will take to deviate from the current standard of wireless charging, which still requires smartphones to be placed directly on top of charger mats to charge.
The wireless charging technology is not new and has been around for some time. Samsung’s Galaxy S6 and Google’s Nexus 6 support wireless charging, but they require the use of a charging puck, which still has to be plugged in.
Also, the Apple Watch uses a form of wireless charging called inductive charging, which is similar to what the previously mentioned Android phones use. The company even released a wireless charging dock for the watch with a puck that raises so one can charge it in nightstand mode.
However Apple says wireless charging in that form isn’t convenient for that reason. Hence it wants to push the boundaries with next year’s iPhone
Bloomberg noted that Apple could get around that with a patent obtained in 2010 that can put near-field magnetic resonance technology in the iMac. Hence PCs would serve as the wireless charging hub. A similar technology was reported at CES 2016, called Cota. Cota has the ability to send power up to 10 meters away.
In addition, Apple is reportedly working with Beats Electronics, which it bought for $3 billion in 2014, to develop wireless headphones that would come with a charger and be sold as a premium accessory.