According to a few tweets from Jon Prosser today, one of which includes a blurry image of a potential wireless charging mat replacement for the original AirPower accessory, Apple engineers are currently working on a device codenamed “C68”, which may be the replacement to the original vision. Prosser recently tweeted out that Apple is “revisiting” the idea of an AirPower wireless charging mat, and the C68 accessory may be just that.
So what about the heating issues that plagued the original AirPower and ultimately led to its cancellation? According to Prosser, Apple is addressing that problem with an A11 processor under the hood. You can check out the original tweet that kicked things off today that includes the blurry image just below:
While working from home, engineers on Apple’s ‘Sharing and Proximity’ team are receiving prototype units of something called “C68“.
They are being asked work on software communication between devices for a “future product” that has an A11 inside to “dynamically manage heat”. pic.twitter.com/q4UvnF4ksx
— Jon Prosser (@jon_prosser) April 10, 2020
In subsequent tweets, Prosser provides additional information about the device. He notes that the Apple Watch uses a proprietary charging method, which in turn means it requires more energy to charge. He says that in previous iterations of the AirPower setting an Apple Watch down on the mat would make the entire thing overheat, and, in some cases, even combust. So that was obviously not going to work for a consumer-ready product.
To address this, Apple is prototyping an AirPower wireless charging mat with an A11 processor. This makes it possible to route power to “specific coil regions and can dynamically wait for temperatures to drop before applying more power”. This new design will hopefully prevent the accessory from overheating, even if an Apple Watch is set atop it.
This is not the first time we’ve heard about a potential replacement for the AirPower wireless charging mat. Before the end of March, Prosser said that Apple was revisiting the idea, and that prototypes were being worked on. Meanwhile, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has said in the past that Apple could launch a new wireless charging mat sometime within the first six months of 2020.
Do you want AirPower to make a comeback this year? Let us know in the comments below.