If you were hoping Apple had developed a spectacular new wireless charging system for iPhone 8, you’re going to be disappointed come September.
The latest rumor claims that Apple won’t be using range charging technology developed by Energous as previously expected, but instead one of the existing solutions already found in rival smartphones like those made by Samsung.
Timothy Arcuri, an analyst with Cowen and Company, is confident the iPhone 8 will bring wireless charging as previous reports have promised. However, he warns that fans should not expect a revolutionary new solution that’s exclusive to Apple.
Arcuri expects the company to use an existing solution instead, like the already incredibly popular Qi, or rival Airfuel. Apple could use a multipurpose chip that supports both technologies, which is what Samsung employs in its latest Galaxy phones.
Qi seems to be the most likely option if Apple chooses only one. Just last week, the company joined the Wireless Power Consortium, the group behind Qi technology.
Fans were hoping Apple would team up with Energous to provide wireless charging that uses 5GHz radio frequency signals coupled with beam-forming to delivery power at range. It would allow an iPhone to be charged completely wirelessly, without special pads.
Energous CEO Steve Rizzone fueled speculation by claiming his company had reached a deal to provide its technology to “one of the largest consumer electronics companies in the world.”
However, the U.S. Federal Communications Commission has only recently approved a version of Energous technology that delivers very low power over just a few inches. It would not be suitable for the iPhone, which is already slow to charge via a Lightening cable.
The iPhone would require higher levels of power and a wider range. A solution that meets these requirements is yet to be approved by the FCC.