DM

London

Apple is developing a radical wireless charging system for the iPhone, it has been claimed.

The system would not require users to place the handset on a 'mat', but instead would be able to work over longer distances.

According to Bloomberg, the system could be implemented in 2017.

'Apple is exploring cutting-edge technologies that would allow iPhones and iPads to be powered from further away than the charging mats used with current smartphones, the people said, asking not to be identified as the details are private,' it claims.

'The iPhone maker is looking to overcome technical barriers including loss of power over distance with a decision on implementing the technology still being assessed, they said.' Apple has previously made a patent application for a system to use an iMac personal computer as a hub for wirelessly recharging at a distance of about 1 meter using a technique called near-field magnetic resonance. 

Apple currently uses a similar technique, called induction, to charge its Watch.

The wireless charging is just one of several radical new technologies Apple is expected to introduce. Apple is working with its longtime audio chip partner Cirrus Logic to adapt the audio chipset in the iPhone to work with the Lightning port, according to our source,' Fast Company says. 

Apple is also believed to be developing a more expensive pair of noise-canceling, Lightning-connected, earphones or headphones, possibly under its Beats brand, the site claims. Apple is expected to include an adapter with the handset to use older regular 3.5mm headphones.  

It is the latest in long claims have emerged that Apple is set to kill off the headphone socket. In order to shrink the thickness of a future handset, Apple is rumoured to be looking at ways to get rid of the standard 3.5mm headphone port.

Now, more reports suggest the yet-to-be-announced iPhone 7 will feature a single, multipurpose lightning port that will double up as a headphone port as well as charger. There are rumoured plans to do away with the headphone jack, but now, developments for the iPhone 7 could be taking an even bigger leap – Li-Fi.

A Twitter user has revealed an image to show that the company may be testing Li-Fi technology for the iPhone 7, which would mean data transmission runs on visible light waves, instead of radio. Li-Fi is reportedly 100 times faster than Wi-Fi, and would be significantly more secure. 

In an image accompanying the tweet, the developer highlights where the code says, ‘LiFi Capability,’ indicating that this suggests Li-Fi testing plans for the next wave of iPhones. Scientists have taken to the streets in recent years to test the capabilities of Li-Fi, and it's recently undergone testing in offices and industrial environments in Tallinn, Estonia.

This new wireless system hit speeds of 224 gigabits per second in the lab, and has the potential to revolutionize internet usage. Harald Haas from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland invented Li-Fi in 2011. 

Haas demonstrated that he could transmit more data than a cellular tower by flickering light from a single LED, according to ScienceAlert. The system works in a similar way to Morse code, using visible light communication (VLC), but operates at speeds that are too high to be detected by the naked eye.