Apple is reportedly going to update the iPad Pro next year, and among the changes is a slight redesign to support letting you charge your iPhone or AirPods via the back of the tablet.
- The next iPad Pro should arrive in 2022.
- It’ll have a glass back for MagSafe wireless charging.
- Reverse wireless charging will let it charge other devices.
iPad Pro may gain MagSafe bidirectional wireless charging
Apple is allegedly working on a new iPad Pro model for release sometime in 2022 that would make it possible to charge your iPhone or other gadgets by laying them on the tablet’s back.
Reporter Mark Gurman, writing for Bloomberg:
As part of its development of the next iPad Pro, Apple is also trying out technology called reverse wireless charging. That would allow users to charge their iPhone or other gadgets by laying them on the back of the tablet.
Keep in mind that all iPad Pros since 2018 models and onward can charge your iPhone through its USB-C port with a Lightning to USB-C cable. Reverse wireless charging would basically accomplish the same thing but without any wires.
Curiously, the article asserts that the Cupertino company “had previously been working on making this possible for the iPhone to charge AirPods and Apple Watches”.
However, the iPhone currently lacks support for reverse wireless charging.
iPad Pro is switching to a glass backside
If the next iPad Pro is serious about supporting wireless charging, then that aluminum backside needs to go. Indeed, as Gurman writes, the main design change in testing for the new iPad Pro is “a switch to a glass back from the current aluminum enclosure.”
Here’s the full quote:
For the new iPad Pro, the switch to a glass back is being tested, in part, to enable wireless charging for the first time. Making the change in material would bring iPads closer to iPhones, which Apple has transitioned from aluminum to glass backs in recent years.
Let’s not forget about MagSafe
MagSafe is coming to the iPad Pro
Similar to the iPhone 12 devices that support both the ubiquitous Qi wireless charging protocol and MagSafe, the next iPad Pro is believed to adopt a magnet-based MagSafe system to ensure more consistent charging speeds.
The company is testing a similar MagSafe system for the iPad Pro. Wireless charging will likely be slower than directly plugging in a charger to the iPad’s Thunderbolt port, which will remain as part of the next models.
Good to know that wired charging isn’t going to be removed soon.
Can Mark Gurman be trusted?
Gurman is an excellent reporter, among the most accurate Apple writers out there, but he isn’t perfect. All things considered, you should keep in mind that Apple could easily abandon plans to equip the iPad Pro with reverse wireless charging—especially knowing that the company has failed to roll out the same capability on the iPhone, its most popular gadget.
Gurman acknowledges as much, writing that development work on the new iPad Pro is still “early,” meaning the company’s plans could “change or be canceled before next year’s launch”.