Collector goes hands-on with functioning AirPower charging mat prototype

Apple device collector Giulio Zompetti has acquired a functioning AirPower mat prototype. As you likely know, AirPower was a multi-device wireless charging mat that Apple announced in 2017 and later canceled after failing to “meet its own standards of quality.” For any doubters that may think this is one of those many knock-offs, Giulio has assured followers that this is a genuine AirPower prototype that somehow made its way outside of Apple.

The prototype AirPower mat that Zompetti has shown off looks a bit different from what the final product was expected to look like. It’s black instead of white and has a thin metal ring around the edge. This is more than likely a device that was still in the engineering phase rather than one with the finished industrial design.

Like Apple previewed in 2017, this AirPower mat also triggers the special wireless charging animations that were planned to be exclusive to the AirPower mat. You can see that the animation pulls Giulio’s wallpaper and the current time rather than showing a static model of an iPhone.

Apple continued working on AirPower through the iOS 13 beta cycle, which explains why this animation appears on a newer iPhone model with the iOS 13 default wallpaper. The interface is ever so slightly tweaked since they continued to mess with the user interface as development on the product progressed.

Many of us were very sad that AirPower never made it to production, but Apple was simply unable to make a product that fit their standards. Maybe someday we will see AirPower become a reality if the technology catches up with the dream, but in the meantime Apple is focused on MagSafe charging.

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