iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro may support bilateral charging in hardware, but the software may be disabled

There were a lot of rumors swirling around about Apple’s new iPhones before the company got around to announcing them, including one that suggested the newest handsets would support bilateral charging.

But sometimes the rumors just don’t pan out, leaving some folks wanting more by the time Apple does get around to unveiling its newest handsets. Now that the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and iPhone 11 Pro Max are officially official, we know the handsets don’t offer two-way charging.

However, Sonny Dickson took to Twitter (via MacRumors)┬álate last night to say that a “reliable source” informed him the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro do “include the hardware for bilateral charging”. However, Apple apparently disabled the software needed to make it work.

If this is indeed the case, that means the iPhone 11 series does support bilateral charging, technically. But Apple may not be willing to activate the software side of things so the phones can actually get the job done.

Just hours before Appel’s “by innovation only” event earlier this week, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo released a note that suggested Apple had scrapped the plan to launch bilateral charging in the iPhone 11 series because the “charging efficiency” may not have reached Apple’s standards.

As a result, Apple may have scrapped the feature just a short time before the announcement. That means disabling the software side of things would just make sense, rather than scrapping the hardware and starting over in that regard.

Bilateral charging is a feature that allows a device like a smartphone to charge another device on its back. You just turn the phone over so that the Apple logo is facing up, and you set the other device down on it. Samsung made the feature noteworthy thanks to its Galaxy S10.

We won’t know if this is the case until the iPhone 11 and iPhone 11 Pro get the teardown treatment later this month. But if Apple did indeed plan to have the feature available in these handsets, then the necessary hardware tweaks would have to be in place.

Could we maybe see Apple enable this feature down the line? It’s certainly not impossible. But that would be a surprising move. Then again, it would be a nice surprise, so who knows.

Were you looking forward to this rumored feature? Bummed out that it didn’t make the cut for the iPhone 11 series?