Xiaomi announced a lot of new products today (March 29), Highlighted by the new Xiaomi Mi 11 Ultra. But in addition to rolling out a new phone and fitness band, the Chinese company took aim at Apple in a new way by offering a charging accessory that Apple never quite could bring to market.
That would be AirPower, Apple’s attempt to make a wireless charing pad that was supposed to charge multiple products at once. Announced in 2017 but scrapped in 2019 without ever shipping, Apple said it killed AirPower due to heat dissipation concerns. And yet, here in 2021, Xiaomi has taken up the charge with a new wireless charging pad of its own.
Though it bears no fancy name, Xiaomi’s charging pad sure holds plenty of promise. Thanks to its 19 Qi induction coils, this pad can charge up to three devices. Each device will receive 20W of power, which is pretty standard for wireless charging pads. While not blazing fast like OnePlus’ 50W wireless charger or Xiaomi’s newly-announced 80W Mi Wireless Charging Stand Set, that’s still fine in exchange for the convenience of going wireless to charge multiple devices at once.
With so many coils packed into one spot, your device — be it phone, watch, earbuds case, and so on — will find one that works for it and start accepting the juice. The really wide base means that you can fit three devices on to Xiaomi’s pad if you’re strategic about placement.
Beyond just the announcement, Xiaomi wanted to poke fun at Apple’s failure to figure out a solution. The Chinese company claims it spent the better part of two years getting this right, and even showed off an iPhone charging on the new pad. These shots off the bow don’t seem all that unwarranted. After all, we’ve all been conditioned to think that if any company can figure out a solution to a technological problem, it’s Apple.
Xiaomi claims that the new wireless charging pad is virtually silent, basically saying that “you can’t hear it.” The pad will retail for 599 yuan in China, which equates to roughly $90 in the U.S.. That’s an expensive wireless charger, but it might all be worth it for the promise of ultimate convenience. Now all we need is contactless charging and we’ll be set.