iPhone 8 wireless charging speed will improve with future firmware update from Apple

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in iPhone
At launch, the iPhone 8 will recharge via inductive wireless technology at a rate comparable to the standard 5-watt charger that ships with the handset. But Apple plans to improve that speed with a future software update.




Apple's plans were revealed Tuesday by Jim Dalrymple of The Loop in this iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus review. Without getting into specifics, Dalrymple said that the iPhone 8 units will see a slight increase in wireless charging capacity later this year.

According to him, the iPhone 8 currently charges at a rate equal to the 5-watt wall adapter in the box. Apple-recommended third-party charging pads from Belkin and Mophie available at launch work at a higher 7.5-watt rate.

It's unclear whether Apple will bump up from 5 watts to 7.5 watts, or potentially more. Wireless inductive charging in the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X is based on the Wireless Power Consortium's Qi standard, which supports 15-watt "fast" charging with its 1.2.x specification.




Rumors have suggested Apple's iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X will top off with 7.5-watt charging. But with the news that a firmware update can and will boost charging speeds later this year, it's unknown whether Qi 1.2.x 15-watt charging is a possibility.

Apple won't offer its own wireless charging pad at launch, but plans to enter the fray next year with AirPower, a proprietary modification of Qi that will support Apple Watch Series 3 and new AirPods case charging. Pricing and launch date for AirPower remain unknown, though AppleInsider's sources have indicated the product is likely to launch in the first quarter of 2018.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 10
    If I had to guess I would say that the update will bring it to 7.5-watt charging. I'm highly skeptical of "fast" charging of both the wired and wireless variety, and I like the fact that Apple has been very cautious and hesitant with it. In all cases, it is done with optional accessories only, which I feel is absolutely appropriate. And when it comes to the "latest" Qi standard, Apple will likely again remain cautious. These are the first iPhones to support Qi, and the first iPhone to be given Apple's blessing to seemingly charge with anything that claims to be Qi-compatible. That is a huge risk on their part, one they've obviously spent years weighing. Very different world from saying "Use MFI-certified devices only".
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 10
    Yeah guessing 7.5 as well. There is an important distinction to be made between technology idealism (“15 watt charging spec!”) and real world pragmatism. As a software engineer and manager who has launched physical products before, I’ve seen this divergence. Sometimes you just gotta be more practical than idealist. Real world constraints, tradeoffs, etc...
    edited September 2017 Metriacanthosauruswatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 10
    This one feature makes me want to upgrade my SE, my Series 0 AppleWatch, buy a new case for my AirPods and buy the PowerPad when it comes out.


    I have the Apple watch white Pad and love just laying my watch down instead of fiddling with cables and stands to charge my iPhone, iPad and AirPods.


    Sounds like a small thing, but it's really convenient. I'd probably have 2 PowerPads, one for my desk at work and one on my night stand. 

    Best.
    Metriacanthosauruscreek0512SoundJudgment
  • Reply 4 of 10
    This one feature makes me want to upgrade my SE, my Series 0 AppleWatch, buy a new case for my AirPods and buy the PowerPad when it comes out.

    Sounds like a small thing, but it's really convenient. I'd probably have 2 PowerPads, one for my desk at work and one on my night stand. 
    Totally agree.  Currently, I just have a lightning cable, so I can’t charge my Apple Watch and can only charge my iPhone or AirPods one at a time, if I remember to plug in the cable.  The AirPower will keep both charged without me needing to think about it, and can charge my Apple Watch if necessary.  Almost guarantees that my AirPod case will always be charged.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 10
    Personally I'm not really all that enthused about wireless charging at home. I figure as long as I can raise a fork to my mouth I can handle plugging in my devices, it's really not much of an inconvenience at all. However, I am excited about the idea of wireless charging built into tables at restaurants, coffee houses, libraries, etc. That would be very convenient to me.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 10

    " the iPhone 8 units will see a slight increase in wireless charging capacity later this year."


    Can the math majors on the forum help the author of this article and I out?   Does it make sense to call a charger capacity increase from 5 watts to 7.5 watts as a "slight increase."   
    SoundJudgmentrussw
  • Reply 7 of 10
    I wonder what's their reasoning behind starting with only 5 watts? Anyone have a theory as to why Apple would do this?
  • Reply 8 of 10
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,796member
    I’ve commented on the difference between the level 1.1 support at 7.5 watts, and the level 1.2 support at 15 watts. I got a lot of pushback about my wondering why Apple supposedly isn’t supporting 1.2, from one member, who thinks I shouldn’t question what Apple does. 😳

    the fact is that my 7+ charges a lot faster using my old 10 watt iPad chargers. It charges even faster using the newer 12 watt models, and it even charges faster when plugged into the 29 watt Macbook charger I bought primarily for my iPad Pro 12.9”.

    so I’m wondering why Apple wouldn’t support 15 watts, as some other phones are beginning to. More heat? A bigger coil? Whatever it is, I’d like to know why, if it’s true.
    edited September 2017 SoundJudgment
  • Reply 9 of 10
    MplsPMplsP Posts: 1,560member
    Yeah guessing 7.5 as well. There is an important distinction to be made between technology idealism (“15 watt charging spec!”) and real world pragmatism. As a software engineer and manager who has launched physical products before, I’ve seen this divergence. Sometimes you just gotta be more practical than idealist. Real world constraints, tradeoffs, etc...
    That's my concern, too. I'm pretty naive when it comes to inductive charging standards, but from what I've read, some of the implementations on Android phones have been a bit dodgy. Hopefully Apple has taken the 'we're not the first, but the best' approach with this. 

    I'm also wondering how cases will affect the speed. Inductive charging is very sensitive to proximity, so a case moving the phone a few mm off the pad could have a noticeable effect on charging speed. I'm sure we'll see once the 8's start shipping. 
  • Reply 10 of 10
    melgrossmelgross Posts: 31,796member
    MplsP said:
    Yeah guessing 7.5 as well. There is an important distinction to be made between technology idealism (“15 watt charging spec!”) and real world pragmatism. As a software engineer and manager who has launched physical products before, I’ve seen this divergence. Sometimes you just gotta be more practical than idealist. Real world constraints, tradeoffs, etc...
    That's my concern, too. I'm pretty naive when it comes to inductive charging standards, but from what I've read, some of the implementations on Android phones have been a bit dodgy. Hopefully Apple has taken the 'we're not the first, but the best' approach with this. 

    I'm also wondering how cases will affect the speed. Inductive charging is very sensitive to proximity, so a case moving the phone a few mm off the pad could have a noticeable effect on charging speed. I'm sure we'll see once the 8's start shipping. 
    New Qi implementations don’t just use induction, so they say you can charge from about an inch away, though power transfer will obviously be less.
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