AirUnleashed Wireless Charging Mat: An Attempt at an Apple AirPowerby Anton Shilov on May 2, 2019 12:00 PM EST
When Apple cancelled its AirPower wireless charging mat earlier this year, many users of the company’s latest devices got upset, yet spawned a number of third-party options that offer similar functionality. One of such products is the AirUnleashed wireless charging mat that looks like Apple’s AirPower and can charge up to three Qi devices simultaneously. There is a catch, of course.
Unlike Apple’s AirPower (which reportedly used up to 32 overlapping charging coils), the AirUnleashed relies only on three coils that can deliver up to 15.3 W of power to three devices: an iPhone, an Apple Watch, and an Airpods headset. Many overlapping coils enabled Apple to build a wireless charging mat that could charge up to three gadgets simultaneously wherever they are placed on its surface. By contrast, the AirUnleashed requires Apple Watch to be placed on a designated location.
The manufacturer of the wireless charging mat, which is also called AirUnleashed, says that the device works like a regular wireless charger: the mat stops charging devices when they are full. Meanwhile the mat requires at least a QC 2.0-compatible charger, so it is not compatible with Apple’s default 5W iPhone adapter and needs an iPad adapter.
As for physical characteristics, the AirUnleashed measures 188×105×12 mm and has a white leather finish.
The AirUnleashed is currently available directly from the company for $99.
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Guspaz - Friday, May 3, 2019 - linkAssuming it works. It appears to be largely theoretical at this point as I can’t find any coverage of the product or their CES preferences other than press releases.
Guspaz - Friday, May 3, 2019 - linkCES presence, that is.
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rahvin - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - linkThe insurmountable obstacle was the ridiculously small charge rate of all the wireless techs. Even this new one barely meets bog standard USB-C charging rates, let alone PD capable charging. The early chargers could barely hit 7W, the newest in the current crop is 11W, both are smaller than Micro-USB can do (12W).
So this new wireless tech can miraculously meet the charge rate of plugging in a standard USB-C charger, but by the time this is on sale nearly every phone on the market will support USB-C PD (Power Delivery) capability, which is typically 20W-30W standard, but can go as high as 60W charging in the halo phones.
To understand why that's important, plugging in the cable will charge your phone in HALF the time that laying it on the mat will. About the only place I can see someone using a mat is at home on the nightstand, and even then I question how many people would be willing to outlay $100 to avoid plugging in a cable with the standard PD charger the phone came with.
Until wireless can at least match cable based power delivery wattage I just don't see it going anywhere except as a cool concept. The vast majority of people would never spend the extra money for it. IIRC it also adds a pretty significant cost to the phone as well to support it, let alone the cost of not being able to use metal case between the charger and the mat which limits you to glass or plastic, ie cheap in look and feel or breakable and finger print magnet.
Hyper72 - Thursday, May 2, 2019 - linkYou don't see wireless charging go anywhere but to me it seems quite popular already. In any case it would be interesting to see some real sales numbers rather than us spewing assumptions that fit our narratives.
I certainly enjoy mine. 7.5W is enough for me and I like not to wear down my battery too fast with super fast charging, my last one lasted 4 years. I charge it once a day next to my workstation.
BedfordTim - Friday, May 3, 2019 - linkIn most usage situations charging rate doesn't really matter. At work I put my phone on the charger and it has all day to charge. At home if I want to charge the phone overnight then again time is not an issue. If you drain your phone several times a day then this is not for you but for lighter users it is ideal.
jospoortvliet - Friday, May 3, 2019 - linkYou know the s10 does 15 watt and the mi 9 20 watts wireless right? 7.5 watt is very 2017...