Apple is no stranger to unorthodox design changes. With a recent track record including the removal of the iPhone headphone jack, they have more than proven themselves modern innovators. But not all changes are driven by innovation, in fact, the anticipated adoption of the glass back to enable wireless charging (not possible with aluminum) for the iPhone 8 is actually a catch up move with the industry. Other manufacturers have integrated inductive charging “wireless charging” into devices for years now. Granted, there are third party adapters for iPhone wireless charging, but nothing beats out of the box functionality. This technology will surely receive a revitalization of interest now that Apple is adopting it, so we thought it would be fun to X-ray the components involved in wireless charging!
The image below is of your typical 5v wireless pad charger (Qi standard). The first thing that jumps out at you is the inductive coil. When current runs through the coil it creates an electromagnetic field. Below that, the chargers circuit, consisting of transformers, resistors, capacitors etc.
The second image is a typical coil arrangement for a smartphone. The coil in the smartphone feeds off the electromagnetic field created by the charging pad. The current transferred from devices is now alternate current or AC. Most devices are powered through direct current or DC. This means the current must be transformed once again to DC, it is done so at the smartphone board via transformers.
For those of you interested in the iPhone 8 stay tuned! We will be X-raying the new iPhone when it releases!