Apple is said to be working on long-range wireless charging technology, which could make its way into the iPhone and iPad as early as 2017, according to Bloomberg. While products like the Apple Watch support inductive charging through the magnetic dock, the manufacturer is said to be developing technologies that can charge a phone even when it's not in contact with the charging plate:

Apple is exploring cutting-edge technologies that would allow iPhones and iPads to be powered from further away than the charging mats used with current smartphones, the people said, asking not to be identified as the details are private. The iPhone maker is looking to overcome technical barriers including loss of power over distance with a decision on implementing the technology still being assessed, they said.

Efficiency of power transfer decreases as the distance between transmitter and receiver grows, which means batteries take longer to recharge.

Rumors of Apple introducing wireless charging solutions are nothing new, but there hasn't been much in the way of a final product. That may finally change next year.

Source: Bloomberg