Apple cancels Airpower charging mat

The project announced in late 2017 proved to be an engineering challenge


Afp March 30, 2019
The Apple AirPower, a wireless charging system for iPhones, was unveiled during a media event in California on September 12, 2017. PHOTO: AFP

SAN FRANCISCO: Apple confirmed on Friday that it will not deliver on its promise of helping usher in a wireless future with an AirPower mat for charging its devices.

The project announced in late 2017 proved to be an engineering challenge, Apple senior vice president of hardware engineering Dan Riccio told AFP.

"After much effort, we've concluded AirPower will not achieve our high standards and we have canceled the project," Riccio said.

"We continue to believe that the future is wireless and are committed to push the wireless experience forward."

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He apologised to Apple fans who were looking forward to the AirPower.

AirPower was announced at the same time as the iPhone X, a premium model that marked the tenth anniversary of the company's flagship smartphone.

It was heralded as part of a shift to mobile lifestyles less entangled by wires, and images at the project's unveiling showed AirPower as a mat where Apple's phone, smartwatch, and AirPod ear-bud case could be placed together to charge without being plugged in.

While Apple has delayed the release of products in the past such as its AirPod earbuds and a HomePod smart speaker, it is not known to fail to deliver on innovations touted at events.

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Other companies sell charging stands or pads that can be used to wirelessly power up iPhones or other devices compatible with the technology, which is based on an industry standard.

The broken hardware promise comes as Apple shifts its focus to digital content and services to break free of its reliance on iPhone sales.

With Hollywood stars galore, Apple this week unveiled its streaming video plans along with news and game subscription offerings.

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