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Rumor: Apple's 'iPhone 8' will use separate wireless charging accessory, ditch Lightning-to-3.5mm adapter

Only one of this fall's upcoming iPhone models — the so-called "iPhone 8" or "iPhone X" — will offer inductive charging and a glass back, but buyers will have to use a separate accessory to juice up wirelessly, a report said on Saturday.


'iPhone 8' concept rendering by Marek Weidlich.


The accessory could be based on technology by Luxshare, a Chinese company previously thought to be supplying coils for the wireless charger bundled with the Apple Watch, according to Japan's Mac Otakara. The site's claims may imply that Apple is depending on contact-based wireless charging, rather than exploring "long-distance" options like Energous and Dialog Semiconductor.

Apple is also said to be abandoning bundled Lightning-to-3.5mm adapters with future iPhones. It included one with the iPhone 7, hoping to stem a backlash from people who rely on 3.5mm-based audio accessories —the phone otherwise depends on Lightning and Bluetooth.

At the same time, the company isn't expected to include a Lightning-to-USB-C cable by default, despite USB-C ports being standard on the MacBook and MacBook Pro. Other Macs don't have built-in USB-C, and the standard is still rare on Windows PCs.

The accuracy of the Mac Otakara rumor is questionable, especially as the site suggests that anticipated 4.7- and 5.5-inch models won't have wireless charging or glass backs, while the "iPhone 8" will have a 5-inch display. These points conflict with other recent reports, which have said for instance that the "X" will sport a 5.8-inch OLED panel, or at least a 5.1- to 5.2 inch one.

Mac Otakara has at least occasionally proven accurate, having successfully predicted some iPhone 7 features like the removal of the headphone jack.

The "iPhone X" could prove to be too expensive for many phone shoppers, with a rumored price tag ">over $1,000. It may be intended as a special 10th-anniversary device however, especially given low OLED capacity in the supply chain.