The iPhone 8's wireless charging feature could be sold as an optional extra, leaked images of Apple's wireless charging pads have revealed.
John Gruber, an Apple expert, said the iPhone 8 could work with a wireless charger, but could require an additional accessory in order to work.
I’ve heard that inductive charging will (a) be sold separately, and (b) might be late, waiting for iOS 11.1 (a la Portrait mode last year). https://t.co/N65dHMNQIJ— John Gruber (@gruber) July 8, 2017
Leaked pictures on Chinese social media appear to confirm that Apple is working on a wireless charger ahead of its release of the iPhone 8 next month. The charging pads in the images are expected to have been designed for the iPhone 8, but will be sold separately. They could also work with two other devices, possibly called the iPhone 7s and 7s Plus.
Rival Android smartphones, such as the Samsung Galaxy S8, have featured wireless charging for a number of years. The iPhone 8 could be the first Apple phone to include the technology, which allows users to power-up their device without plugging it in by placing it on an inductive surface.
The images of the wireless charging pads appeared on Chinese social media platform Weibo, according to Macrumours. Their authenticity cannot be verified. However, multiple reports about the iPhone 8 have suggested wireless charging will be embedded in the phone.
Earlier this year Robert Hwang, chief executive of Apple supply chain company Wistron, revealed the iPhone 8 will come with wireless charging and waterproofing.
"New features like waterproof and wireless charging now require some different testing, and waterproof function will alter the assembly process a bit," he said.
Apple has previously filed patents for charging smartphones using Wi-Fi signals. But it appears the company will opt for inductive technology rather than the signal method for the iPhone 8.
iPhone 8 release date
The iPhone 8, if indeed it is called that, has been rumoured to include an OLED screen, wireless charging, facial recognition, an edge-to-edge display and - for the first time - no home button.
It is expected to be released in early September on Tuesday September 5 or Wednesday September 6 for the iPhone 8 release. Because the Monday is a US holiday, Wednesday might be more likely.