Apple’s MagSafe solution makes wireless charging better but isn’t the solution we deserve

October 13th, 2020

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.

Aira Background

Aira is setting a new standard for wireless charging with FreePower, an elegant hardware and software solution that offers complete freedom of placement across surfaces. Designed and engineered in-house from the ground up, FreePower is a flexible platform that can accommodate different surface sizes and any number of devices. As a technology supplier, Aira is partnering with companies that want to integrate free position wireless charging into their products.

FreePower is a fundamentally new approach to wireless power, equipped with more than 60 patent assets for its groundbreaking hardware, software, and magnetics. Unlike traditional wireless chargers, which require devices to be precisely aligned with a small hot spot, FreePower features full surface charging from corner to corner. As Qi-enabled devices are placed across the surface, precise power is delivered and intelligently managed to optimize performance.

Back to News