Back when Apple announced the iPhone 15 and iPhone 15 Pro in September 2023 it also announced that the phones would be getting a new wireless charging capability. In reality, the new charging standard, dubbed Qi, is basically MagSafe by another name. But the key is in the word "standard," because it means that other phones and any accessory maker can create devices that adhere to that standard. And as a result, they don't have to pay Apple a MagSafe licensing fee to slap some magnets in their product or, importantly, offer 15W charging.
That's of course great news for those who pick up Apple's best iPhones, but with times hard for everyone not everyone will rush out to buy a new iPhone every year, especially if they already have a pretty great iPhone 14 or iPhone 14 Pro. For those people, Apple has some excellent news — both the iPhone 14 and iPhone 13 series' of devices are going to support MagSafe's new friend, Qi2, and they'll do it soon.
In fact, those older iPhones could well support Qi2 as soon as next week. That's because the iOS 17.2 update that will add support for the Qi2 standard is expected to be released next week or, at the very latest, the week after that. So that's great news for everyone and we can all start rushing out to buy our fancy new Qi2 chargers, right? Well, not quite, because actually finding a Qi2-compatible charger is going to be a problem. They just don't seem to exist yet.
No Qi2 for you
While Apple is expected to try and get iOS 17.2 into the hands of the public before the Christmas holidays roll around, things haven't moved so quickly for companies promising to get their Qi2 act together. I've seen companies promise that they have Qi2 updates to their product lineup in the works with some pointing to a 2023 released timeframe. But with the days running away with us, the silence is deafening. Lots of companies were quick to say they intended to take the Qi2 bull by the horns, but where are the chargers?
It isn't as if these accessory makers aren't incentivized to pick up what Qi2 is laying down, either. Apple charges companies to put the canonical MagSafe into their products, something that inevitably makes their wares cost more for customers, too. There's a reason some of Belkin's MagSafe accessories cost hundreds of dollars but you can find similar ones on Amazon with a random band's name on that cost a fraction of that. Why? MagSafe, that's why. And the no-name model only has standard Qi charging so tops out at 7.5W. Which frankly, sucks.
15W charging is coming, probably
The key aspect of Qi2 is that it will bring 15W wireless charging to iPhones as standard, just like MagSafe. But so far Apple hasn't quite confirmed that to be the case. We know that Qi2 will be supported, but Apple hasn't confirmed the charge rate although it seems unlikely it would limit charging to just 7.5W — after all, Apple was one of the companies behind the Qi2 standard in the first place.
Thankfully, there's a hint that 15W is a go. The Verge reports that an Anker spokesperson told them that iPhones that use its new MagGo products will support 15W charging. Assuming those new MagGo products are Qi2-certified, we can assume that all Qi2 products will charge just as quickly, too.
That's once they go on sale, that is. And who knows when that will actually be.
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Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.
Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.