2019 iPhone might charge Apple Watch wirelessly

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Charging your Apple Watch could become as simple as placing it on your iPhone.
Charging your Apple Watch could become as simple as placing it on your iPhone.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

The iPhone coming this fall will of course be able to receive power wirelessly, but it won’t stop there: it’ll also reportedly transmit it. This would allow an Apple Watch to be charged just by placing its on iOS handset.

This upcoming device will also reportedly get one of the benefits of USB-C while still holding onto the Lightning connector.

Wireless power coming and going

The first iOS devices with Qi inductive  charging launched in 2017, but these can only get power this way. The 2019 iPhone will be the first able to transmit it as well, according to a report in MacOtakara. The Japanese site claims to have received this information from sources in Apple’s component supply chain, as well as the respected analyst Ming-Chi Kuo.

The Apple Watch would seem to be the primary beneficiary of this rumored feature, though Apple recently introduced an AirPods wireless charging case. It might even be possible for one iPhone to give another a bit of power.

Samsung fans will be quick to point out that the Galaxy S10 already has this feature. But Apple didn’t steal this idea from a rival devcie, as it filed a patent on wirelessly charging  an Apple Watch with an iPhone over a year ago. At the time, the company was envisioning building the technology into all its computers.

Faster charging through the Lightning port

The iPad Pro line eschewed a Lightning port for USB-C, but the next iPhone’s reportedly won’t do the same. Even so, Apple will supposedly still bring some of the benefits to its next handsets.

All recent iPhone models support USB-C fast charging but actually come with USB-A chargers that offer much less power.  This year’s iOS models will come with 18W chargers, according to MacOtakara.  This could well be the same charger that ships with the iPad Pro. A Lightning-to-USB-C cable will also be included, naturally.

18W is more than three times as much power as provided by the current 5W iPhone USB-A charger, significantly speeding up the rate at which the handset gets power. Anyone who doesn’t want to wait can already invest in an USB-C charger and a USB-C-to-Lightning cable.

Last year, there were unconfirmed reports Apple was considering this move for the 2018 models.