Leaked part could show Apple's 'iPhone 8' wireless charging coil assembly

Posted:
in iPhone edited July 2017
A newly leaked component shows what is clearly an inductive coil, claimed to be for the "iPhone 8," with an apparent female Lightning socket. But unanswerable questions surround the provenance of the part.




A post made earlier this week on Slashleaks claims to show a genuine Apple part for either the "iPhone 8" internals, or external charging pad. The center of the part is clearly a charging coil, and a label on the back identifying it as conforming to the Qi specification, so the part is confirmed to be for wireless charging of some sort.

Adding to speculation that the part is authentic, the socket end appears to be a Lightning receptacle. The socket has eight solder points -- where USB-C has 12, and different flavors of USB 3.0 have either four or six solder points.

When compared to other, legitimate Lightning connectors, the leaked part has not only the same number of pins, but also identical spacing for ground connectors at the sides.




Unlike most Lightning connectors, which have retention latches on the side, the alleged Apple part instead has two top latches for retention. However, the port could still be Lightning, as there are a number of different packages that Lightning receptacles come in for different mounting requirements.

Based on the size of known Lightning sockets, the board assembly is about 2.5 inches wide at the point of maximum width of the coil and approximately four inches long at its longest point. While relatively large, it still would fit in the interior of the expected dimensions of the "iPhone 8," or could possibly be used for the coil assembly in an external charging pad.

If the data on the label from the back of the device is correct, expected voltage is between 5V and 12V with power between 0.6A and 2A.

However, that's where the firm data points stop. There are three lines of digitally obscured text, probably from the original social media post which was eradicated somewhere along the line, and AppleInsider has not as of yet found the original posting. There are also no clear markings that point to an Apple part, or conform to any known Apple numbering scheme for parts.

Additionally, the markings on the two large chips on the right side of the image are digitally obscured. It is not clear why somebody claiming to have an Apple part that confirms a feature in an unannounced phone would erase that possible point of proof -- unless it points to another device entirely.

It's also possible that the accessory could have been made by a third-party manufacturer. Apple has partnered with such companies ahead of product launches -- most notably Logitech, which built Smart Connector keyboards for the iPad Pro before the product was publicly revealed.

Apple is expected to unveil not only the "iPhone 8," but also an "iPhone 7s" lineup in September. It's expected that all three models will include support for inductive wireless charging.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 25
    No. Apple isn't going to have a completely separate circuit board for charging. It'll be incorporated into the main motherboard and only the coil will be separate. 
    sergiozretrogustoradarthekatlkruppcornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 25
    No. Apple isn't going to have a completely separate circuit board for charging. It'll be incorporated into the main motherboard and only the coil will be separate. 
    But assuming they have wireless charging, wouldn't they sell a charging dock? Which probably would have a lightning connector? And a coil on a PCB? This is not a phone part, it's probably a charging stand.
    MetriacanthosaurusrandominternetpersonradarthekatSendMcjakaylkanton zuykovirelandcornchip
  • Reply 3 of 25
    AllianzAllianz Posts: 1member
    this is not a part for an iPhone, maybe a prototype or sample for dev. or testing. No way components this size and footprint will would be used in modern Smartphones. Way to big
    sergiozrandominternetpersonradarthekatcornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 25
    williamhwilliamh Posts: 655member
    That doesn't look like a lightening socket at all.  It looks like a mini-USB.  Maybe I'm wrong on that.  However, the soldering doesn't look that good, the ICs are too big, and there's too much wasted space.  That's not going in an iPhone.
    sergiozwatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 25
    definitely a micro-usb port on the side there; the two catch tabs are on the flat part of the connector like micro-usb, on lightning, the catches are on the narrow edges.

    also, think about how low this would be on the iPhone. SURELY if apple added a QI charging coil, it would be bang in the centre for symmetry and balance when sitting on a charger?
    edited July 2017
  • Reply 6 of 25
    hattighattig Posts: 830member
    Haha, that's about 2mm thick, no way that's going into a phone. The phone will have a much thinner, neater printed coil. No, if that's a real part, then it's for the charging pad.
    cornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 25
    bigbinksbigbinks Posts: 2unconfirmed, member
    The ‘obscured’ text at the bottom clearly says iPhone 8, which is something Apple would never print on a board...
    randominternetpersonaylkcornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 25
    hattig said:
    Haha, that's about 2mm thick, no way that's going into a phone. The phone will have a much thinner, neater printed coil. No, if that's a real part, then it's for the charging pad.
    On second look the coil doesn't seem right for energy transfer anyway. Looks more like some NFC antenna.
  • Reply 9 of 25
    williamh said:
    That doesn't look like a lightening socket at all.  It looks like a mini-USB.  Maybe I'm wrong on that.  
    adm1 said:
    definitely a micro-usb port on the side there; 
    What are you both looking at? The difficult-to-see end of the connector? Because the pins where it connects to the board look absolutely nothing like Micro-USB and exactly like Lightning.
    aylk
  • Reply 10 of 25
    elijahgelijahg Posts: 914member
    As others have said, this is clearly not going to end up in the final product. It would be several millimetres thick, judging by the coil wire probably 3 to 4mm.  The final product would have a Mylar printed coil that’d likely be glued onto the back of the iPhone. Apple also uses very dark laquer on their production PCBs, this uses standard clear laquer. Additionally, having a separate PCB would use way too much space in something as small as an iPhone. 
    edited July 2017 radarthekatcornchipwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 25
    I concur with many others here.  At this stage of R&D, this is a finished part going into a dock or charging pad, and not the phone itself.
    aylk
  • Reply 12 of 25
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 4,574administrator
    adm1 said:
    definitely a micro-usb port on the side there; the two catch tabs are on the flat part of the connector like micro-usb, on lightning, the catches are on the narrow edges.

    also, think about how low this would be on the iPhone. SURELY if apple added a QI charging coil, it would be bang in the centre for symmetry and balance when sitting on a charger?
    Nope. MicroUSB has four solder points. We've confirmed this is Lightning.

    We're skeptical about the size as well, and suspect that if it's Apple's at all, it's for a charging plate or dock.
  • Reply 13 of 25
    adm1 said:
    definitely a micro-usb port on the side there; the two catch tabs are on the flat part of the connector like micro-usb, on lightning, the catches are on the narrow edges.

    also, think about how low this would be on the iPhone. SURELY if apple added a QI charging coil, it would be bang in the centre for symmetry and balance when sitting on a charger?
    Nope. MicroUSB has four solder points. We've confirmed this is Lightning.

    We're skeptical about the size as well, and suspect that if it's Apple's at all, it's for a charging plate or dock.
    Yeah -  I don't know what some people are looking at. That's not Micro-USB. Is it Lightning? I don't know for certain, but it could be based on what I see. What I do know is that it is not Micro-USB, definitively.
  • Reply 14 of 25
    chaickachaicka Posts: 112member
    Third-party Charging Dock is of a higher probability based on several factors as many above shared.
    Furthermore, it looks like a low number of layers PCB used in low-cost designs that has less stringent requirements, hence unlikely inbound for a smart-phone. It does not even contains sufficient Apple-styled attributes to be a first-party charging dock.

    My best guest - a 3rd party factory in China (top blurred label is name of the China company and the chinese words of China among that line) is manufacturing this, betting on rumours that there is Qi-based wireless charging in the next generation of iPhones due to launch in few months' time. It does not looks like Logitech outsourced PCB but I could be wrong since I have not been tearing apart Logitech products in recent years.
    aylkwatto_cobra
  • Reply 15 of 25
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    But assuming they have wireless charging, wouldn't they sell a charging dock? Which probably would have a lightning connector? And a coil on a PCB? This is not a phone part, it's probably a charging stand.
    Apple hates docks (for whatever reason). It’ll be a charging pad and you’ll be forced to lay your phone down like a peasant. Seriously, why couldn’t they have made a dock for the iPhone 6 that doesn’t look like it’s going to snap off at any second? And not charge 50 fucking dollars for it? That’s insane.
    bigbinks said:
    The ‘obscured’ text at the bottom clearly says iPhone 8, which is something Apple would never print on a board…
    It also looks edited onto the image and appear to get “in the way” of the circuit underneath it. I assume the text is embossed, so wouldn’t that be the case?
    edited July 2017
  • Reply 16 of 25
    Christoph_RoChristoph_Ro Posts: 2unconfirmed, member
    I think this is part of the charging station. 
  • Reply 17 of 25
    Looks very much like this: https://www.adafruit.com/product/2162
  • Reply 18 of 25
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,399member
    sog35 said:
    Personally, I think the hardware needed to have wireless charging is a massive waste of space on the iPhone. That wasted space could be used for much better purpose.
    I agree, UNLESS this is not inductive charging and instead is proper wireless charging. Put a plug adapter in the box and sell those standalone for $39 a pop and Apple will make billions.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 19 of 25
    sog35 said:
    Personally, I think the hardware needed to have wireless charging is a massive waste of space on the iPhone. That wasted space could be used for much better purpose.
    I agree, UNLESS this is not inductive charging and instead is proper wireless charging. Put a plug adapter in the box and sell those standalone for $39 a pop and Apple will make billions.
    That's not happening anytime soon. It will be great when WiFi itself performs a trickle charge. It will basically be a battery life extender, not necessarily a literal "charging" method in the traditional sense.

    Before that, and not mutually exclusive to that is the ability to charge without plugging in the device. That has value.
  • Reply 20 of 25
    javbwjavbw Posts: 2member
    This is clearly not a phone component. Assuming it is for a phone, and takes the lightning connector - where is the ribbon connectors for power and data to the main board? why does it have such large mounting holes with stencils for larger posts? Thy look nothing like the munting points Apple uses in the phones. And 4 screws? Apple would adhesive that coil into the shell and let the main power controller handle the wireless charging. there is what looks to be a normal USB 4Pin connector mount on the side - no way to actually connect this thing to the guts of a phone. This is obviously a part that mounts into a plastic shell . This might be what is inside a wireless charging pad - it needs mounting screws for the case, and a lightning connector - but not a connection to anything else. Maybe it is a prototype for a 3rd party accessory meant for the iphone 8. maybe it is an apple part for their wireless charing dock. But this is not a phone part.
    watto_cobracornchip
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