We respect Apple’s decision to create a better wireless charging solution for iPhone users with MagSafe. However, we feel their new approach runs counter to AirPower’s original purpose, and the direction in which we believe the industry should be moving. The future should not require small magnetic pucks to be integrated everywhere in order to charge individual devices: real progress means the freedom to charge multiple devices simultaneously across seamless surfaces. Charging needs to be intuitive and ubiquitous – and if small, single-device chargers were the answer, they would be commonplace by now.
Apple has now created two divergent paths for wireless charging: one focused on free device placement on a surface that supports the globally-adopted Qi standard, and another that is proprietary to a specific product and company. Apple’s new MagSafe wireless charging solution adds yet another layer of fragmentation and exclusion to the mix, when the technology should be becoming more accessible and convenient for all.
This exclusivity-centric approach stifles innovation, forcing companies – including those in the consumer electronics and automotive industries – to choose between free placement solutions like FreePower, and adhering to Apple’s closed-ecosystem specifications. And as we’ve seen throughout history, when the ability to innovate is limited, consumers and manufacturers bear the brunt of the impact.
Regardless of these constraints, we remain adamant that the future of wireless charging needs to be more seamless. Consumers need free-placement experiences that can be deployed in many settings, integrated into any surface, and made accessible for every device.
FreePower can provide universally available power throughout the day – at home, in the car, at cafes, hotels, airports, restaurants, and more – that charges more than just smartphones and earbuds. When you harness the intuitive ease-of-use provided by full surface wireless charging, and the inherent technological advantages of free-position design, it opens the door to accommodating laptops, tablets, and other high-powered accessories. Unfortunately, the Apple puck is taking a different path: one that does not work towards this future and to consumers’ benefit, but instead sets it back.
We’ve seen a tremendously positive response to FreePower so far, and we will continue to advocate for future wireless charging experiences that are elegant, effortless, and everywhere.