Tesla Introduces Its Own $300 Version of Apple’s Canceled AirPower Charger. Elon Musk began attacking Apple late last month. Eons after Apple was expected to release its AirPower wireless charging pad, Tesla released their own version for $300.
AirPower’s premise was straightforward: provide a mat on which up to three devices could be charged wirelessly without the user having to fiddle with the placement of charging coils. Apple failed to deliver the product in 2017, leaving many customers perplexed until its cancellation in 2019. Apple stated, “After much effort, we’ve concluded AirPower would not satisfy our high standards and we’ve canceled the project.”
It was a little puzzling that Apple, with all of its money and brainpower, couldn’t figure out how to accomplish what seemed like a straightforward job. By announcing Tesla’s Wireless Charging Platform on Thursday, Elon is likely poking fun at the Cupertino behemoth.
We regret to inform you that this is nothing more than an extremely pricey repackaging of a charging mechanism that has been available for some time already. By incorporating FreePower’s technology, Tesla has created a vehicle with a Cybertruck vibe. FreePower’s position-free wireless charging design has been licensed by other firms and is used in devices like the Nomad Base Station Pro, which has received positive reviews from users. All indications are that it delivers as promised. The mat provides 15W of quick charging power, and you can just place your device anywhere on it. The connection will hold even if you slide the device.
The Nomad Base Station “may one day be the future of wireless charging technology, right now, the current iteration is just too pricey and too limiting,” according to a review by The Verge in 2020. During that time, you could get that gadget for $229. Although Nomad no longer manufactures this specific model, it still sells reconditioned models on its website for $120.
However, while FreePower may have solved the issue of where to place a device for wireless charging, you still can’t just set an Apple Watch down on the pad and have it start charging. Devices adhering to the Qi standard are the only ones that can be charged using these chargers, and the Apple Watch can’t be charged with anything but the MagSafe adapter or the magnetic puck that came with it.
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So, Tesla hasn’t accomplished the goal that Apple originally set out to achieve (simultaneously charging an iPhone, Apple Watch, and AirPods), it didn’t actually invent the technology, and it’s charging an extremely insane price for their mat.
There’s no way for me to know for sure that this release was made only to piss off Tim Cook. Perhaps Musk was just trying to generate some good press for Tesla out there. The stock price of the electric vehicle manufacturer hit a new two-year low on Friday as investors fretted over Musk’s fixation on Twitter.
There are two significant issues plaguing Tesla: (1) Elon Musk is constantly selling off billions of dollars worth of shares, and (2) the individuals who are most likely to purchase an electric vehicle are turned off by his right-wing beliefs (liberals and people who believe in climate change). This week, Tesla added a $7,500 discount on two of its models, which has only increased investor anxiety.
Pre-orders for the expensive charging mat, which is unlikely to turn around Tesla’s woes, can be made on this page, with shipments expected to begin in February. Keep in mind that this charging method is like giving a roofing torch a fresh coat of paint and calling it a flamethrower.