“Today, the US Patent & Trademark Office published a patent application from Apple that relates to wireless charging,” Jack Purcher reports for Patently Apple. “Apple has four wireless charging patents published this year alone.”

“In Apple’s fifth wireless charging patent for 2017, they note that challenges can arise in implementing wireless charging and communications system,” Purcher reports. “If care isn’t taken, sensitivity to antenna misalignment and other issues can make it difficult or impossible to achieve desired levels of performance when integrating antennas and other structures into devices of interest. Apple’s invention is designed to improve wireless circuitry systems using patch antennas.”

“Considering that this is only one of many wireless charging patent applications or record, the timing of any such product to market is unknown at this time,” Purcher reports. “With that said, it’s highly anticipated that Apple’s iPhone 8 will be the first Apple device to bring wireless charging to market in one of many forms and methods.”

Read more, and see Apple’s patent application illustrations and diagrams, in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Truly wireless charging solves many issues, from keeping your iPhone topped off to Apple Watch sleep tracking to, potentially, vastly improved electric vehicle functionality. It’s Holy Grail territory.

Hopefully, Apple’s recent joining of the Wireless Power Consortium doesn’t mean that the next-gen iPhone(s) will merely offer Qi “wireless” charging (which, of course, requires wires) instead of delivering true, groundbreaking wirelsss charging, as in Energous.

Right now, the Apple Watch’s charging system is nice because it’s less fiddly, and especially useful in the dark, but it’s still essentially a wired charging system in practice. If Apple offers Q1-type charging, it’ll be fine, but will not be a big selling point – unless it offers considerably faster charging than today.

SEE ALSO:
Apple has at least five different groups working on wireless charging technology – February 23, 2017
Apple joins Wireless Power Consortium – February 13, 2017
Apple’s ‘iPhone X’ to feature wireless charging and iris scanning technology, sources say – February 10, 2017
KGI’s Ming Chi Kuo predicts wireless charging for all three new iPhones – February 9, 2017
More evidence suggests Apple tie-up with true wireless charging firm Energous – December 21, 2016
Apple supplier Dialog partners with wireless charging company Energous – December 15, 2016
Ming-Chi Kuo: Apple’s next-gen iPhone to feature all-glass case for wireless charging – November 23, 2016
Two major ‘iPhone 8’ leaks reveal groundbreaking new features – November 23, 2016
Evidence suggests Apple is working on the biggest mobile game-changer since the original iPhone – November 8, 2016
Apple and a truly wireless future: AirPods are just the start – September 10, 2016
Apple explores charging stations for electric vehicles, sources say – May 25, 2016
Apple possibly working with Energous on extended range wireless charging for future iPhones – February 5, 2016
Apple developing cutting-edge long-range wirelessly-charged iPhones and iPads – January 29, 2016
iPhone 7 and the potential for wireless charging – January 19, 2016
Apple will drop headphone jack to make the iPhone 7 super slim, source confirms; wireless charging and waterproof, too – January 7, 2016
Apple looks to patent inductive charging system that could power an Apple Pencil or even a future kitchen appliance – January 7, 2016
Apple files 5th wireless inductive charging patent application since Late September – November 5, 2015
Apple patent application reveals iPhone inductive charging sans extra hardware – October 8, 2015
Patent application reveals Apple working on wireless charging systems focused on rapid power delivery – August 27, 2015
Apple invents inductive charging interfaces for mobile devices – April 2, 2015
Apple ‘iPhone 7’ models likely to offer wireless charging – April 2, 2015