Yes, after years of going mainstream on Android flagships, Apple may finally give in to wireless charging in the coming year with its tenth anniversary iPhone 8 models. As reported by 9to5Mac, analyst Ming-Chi Kuo from KGI Securities said that the 2017 iPhone, for the first time, will feature wireless charging.
According to the analyst, who has a pretty good track record with predictions, Apple iPhone 8 owners will finally be able to charge their smartphones by simply placing them on the charging pad. Apple may choose to stick to the Qi wireless charging standard or go in for new branded technology of its own. Not too long ago, Bloomberg had reported that Apple is working on developing a long-range charging technology for future iPhones. But in his recent prediction, Kuo stated that the new iPhone would be charged in a manner similar to the Apple Watch.
And to make this possible, Apple will need to switch to a glass back cover, unless it plans to include it as an add-on accessory in the form of protective case. With that said Nikkei previously hinted that Apple is working with Biel and Lens Technologies a Chinese company for supplying those glass backs.
Analyst predictions aside, it gets a bit obvious that Apple’s iPhones will need wireless charging going forward after the company skipped on the 3.5mm headphone jack with the iPhone 7.
The move was not well received, owing to a single lightening port that users had to deal with for both charging and listening to music. Users who did not have a Bluetooth headset, had to choose between charging their iPhone or listening to music as doing both was not possible with power as well as audio being routed through a single lightening port.
If Apple had to provide wireless charging built-in the iPhone 7, it would have made a bit of sense as those pricey wireless AirPods don’t come bundled with the iPhone 7.
Apple is expected to launch three iPhone 8 models in the coming year. A 4.7-inch iPhone 8 along with the standard 5.5-inch model is expected to be joined by a new 5-inch model that will bridge the gap between the two. The iPhone 8 Plus is also expected to feature an OLED display with curved edges.
Three Glass iPhone 8 models
What is important here is Apple’s move to shift to glass bodies. The Cupertino giant is said to be working with Biel and Lens Technologies, a Chinese company who currently supplies glass panels to Apple and Samsung. The same report however points out that Apple could change things at the last minute since it did the same with iPhone 7 Plus model this year. The source pointed out that Apple switched from a single lens iPhone 7 Plus to dual lens design just six months before launch.
“Apple has tentatively decided that all the 5.5-inch, 5-inch and 4.7-inch models will have glass backs, departing from metal casings adopted by current iPhones, and Biel and Lens are likely to be providing all the glass backs for the new iPhones next year,” the source told Nikkei.
The new design will feature metal, but this is expected to be on the inside, where the frame holds both glass panels together along with the innards.
Nikkei points out that Apple is not leaving anything to chance and will be attempting to woo even current iPhone 7 owners to upgrade to its re-design of the iPhone, which also marks the 10th anniversary of the product.
On the manufacturing side of things the competition is heating up as well, as Foxconn who currently provides the specialized metal back on current iPhone models will now have to find way to cook up glass backs that Apple is now out to pursue. The report however points out that Taiwanese Foxconn in all probability will not be able to secure that contract which currently lies in the hands of Chinese-owned Biel and Lens.
An OLED display and Wireless Charging
Nikkei Asia had earlier also reported of OLED displays in the upcoming iPhone 8 models. The same are expected to be produced by Samsung Electronics and the OLED display which would have curved edges will be available only on the 5.5-inch iPhone model.
Also hinted in an earlier report was Apple’s move to finally include wireless charging. This would be possible since the new iPhone 8 models will finally have glass backs, that would allow for wireless charging feature.