Wireless Charging Ecosystem by Apple

Apple keeps finding new ways to make life better. And now, they propose a new way to charge our devices—a way like we’ve never seen before. Last week, the geniuses at Cupertino received a patent for a magnetic ecosystem. This patent allows the charging of multiple devices at the same time, via two-way wireless charging.

There was a drawing attached with the patent, named: Inductive charging between electronic devices. In the illustration, we see a MacBook charging one iPhone and one Apple watch simultaneously. The MacBook was able to do this, because of the embedded charging coils beneath its trackpad and its Iid. The coils allow the charging of devices—whether or not the MacBook is open or shut.

This is not the first time a company is introducing device-to-device wireless charging. Google and Samsung brought theirs already, with the Google’s Pixel 5 and the new Galaxy Book laptops, which Samsung manufactured. However, Apple’s proposal is the first to use the multiple coil placements, even in the lid, palm rest and trackpad, to allow more than one device charge at the same time. Another illustration shows a cable from a power source charging a MacBook, which was charging an iPad, which was charging an iPhone, which was finally charging an Apple Watch.

The Patent for Apple’s Wireless Charging

The Patent for Apple’s Wireless Charging

Last week, Patently Apple reported that the patent also promotes reversible charging—For instance, this will allow an iPhone to charge a MacBook, or allow a MacBook charge the iPhone in return. After the installation of a software, to determine which device is closer to losing its battery life. The software selects this device for charging, while the other device acts as the charger. Apple inserts a set of magnets in the MacBook, to allow the devices align properly for wireless charging. With this technology, Apple hopes that the problems cables and chargers pose might be minimized.

“Some electronic devices include one or more rechargeable batteries that may require external power to recharge,” the patent states. “Often, these devices may be charged using a common or standardized electrical connector or cable. For example, some devices may be charged using a universal serial bus (“USB”) connector or cable. However, despite having standardized connectors and cable, each device may require a separate or dedicated power supply to charge. In some cases, having separate power supplies for each device may be burdensome to use, store, and/or transport.”

Apple’s Developments

This is another step Apple is taking towards portless devices. In 2017, Apple had introduced a wireless charging system called the Airpower, built with a mat which could charge other Apple devices. Apple embedded a number of coils into the mat, and it needed no magnets for alignment. But Apple eventually abandoned the project, due to overheating problems.

So far, this new patent is progressing quite seamlessly, but Apple is yet to resolve one issue. For this new wireless charging ecosystem to work, they have to build the device with glass or plastic. The MacBook’s aluminum will interfere with the charging. Apple is yet to propose a solution to this obstruction, but we await further developments.

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