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2018 has come and gone. So where is Apple's AirPower wireless charging mat?

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© Provided by USA TODAY, a division of Gannett Satellite Information Network, Inc.

By Eli Blumenthal, USA TODAY

During its 2017 announcement of the iPhone X, Apple didn't just show off its vision of what the future of iPhones would look like, it also announced a new way to charge them.

Called AirPower, the charging mat was meant to charge up to three devices at once including a new iPhone, an Apple Watch and a pair of AirPods (with a separate, optional wireless charging case).  In its announcement, Apple promised that the new charger would be "coming in 2018." 

While the iPhone X did, in fact, usher in a new era for iPhones (see this year's XS, XS Max and XR), in a rare move for Apple, both AirPower and a wireless charging case for AirPods that was shown off at the same time never did materialize as promised. 

Not only that, but nearly all mention of the wireless charger has disappeared from Apple's site with the exception of two press releases from the launch of the iPhone 8 and iPhone X. Apple has similarly largely scrubbed the wireless AirPods charger from its website, though oddly still has a picture of it on its main AirPods page charging on an AirPower with a note mentioning the case is "currently unavailable." 

© Screenshot   Apple's wireless AirPods charging case.

Delays for Apple products aren't necessarily new – see the original AirPods launch in 2016 or the launch of the HomePod being pushed from 2017 to earlier this year. But for the company to not provide any real updates after giving a timetable is odd.

So what happened? 

In a blog post from September, notable Apple leaker Sonny Dickson claimed the company seems to have encountered issues with heat management, interference, and issues with charging accuracy and speed. Dickson writes that an AirPower product may not materialize "before Spring." 

Rumors point to new AirPods and the wireless charging case arriving in 2019, though it is still unclear when, or even if, Apple will release AirPower. 

Apple did not reply to a USA TODAY request for comment. 

It is also worth noting that those looking to wirelessly charge their iPhones do have alternatives, thanks to Apple's adoption of the wireless charging standard known as Qi (pronounced "chi"). Mophie, Belkin, Anker, Samsung and others all make wireless chargers that support this standard and would work with the most recent iPhones. 

There are even a few chargers on the market that can wirelessly charge multiple devices at once, though you may want to double check the reviews online before buying any of them. (The same goes for the AirPods cases that claim to offer wireless charging support.)

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Technology - U.S. Daily News: 2018 has come and gone. So where is Apple's AirPower wireless charging mat?
2018 has come and gone. So where is Apple's AirPower wireless charging mat?
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Technology - U.S. Daily News
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