Apple’s long-delayed AirPower charging mat might finally be in production

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AirPower
Could the multi-year wait for AirPower be almost over? Maybe so.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Production of the long-overdue AirPower charging mat has begun at last, according to a report from Apple’s Asian supply chain.

Apple first showed off the multidevice wireless charger way back in 2017, but it remains hopelessly MIA. If this latest supply chain rumor proves true, the wait for AirPower could end soon.

“We just learned from credible source in supply chain that the manufacture Luxshare Precision has already started producing Apple AirPower wireless charging pad,” says a tweet from the website ChargerLab. Luxshare Precision is perhaps best known as a Guangdong, China-based manufacturer of Apple‘s AirPods.

ChargerLab also claims that Pegatron will ramp up production of the charging mat later this month. (That Taiwanese company produces iPhones.)

Why AirPower remains delayed

Apple unveiled AirPower 16 months ago alongside the iPhone 8 and iPhone X, its first smartphones to support wireless charging. This promised accessory can charge an iPhone, Apple Watch and an upcoming AirPods case simultaneously. However, its supposedly advanced features go beyond that.

When an iPhone sits on the charger with other items, the phone’s screen shows the charging status for all of them. In addition, watch, phone, etc., can be arranged in any way on the charger.

It’s this latter feature that reportedly caused problems for engineers, because intermingling three sets of charging coils generated unacceptable amounts of heat. But it appears Apple’s gearheads sorted out this problem at last. After a ridiculously long wait, the AirPower might launch soon.

That said, the U.S. debut of this product could face further delay due to the current government shutdown. If it hasn’t yet received Federal Communications Commission approval, the charger can‘t be released in this country until that agency’s furloughed employees are back on the job.