Apple’s AirPower wireless charger was one of the company’s most high-profile failures ever, but in the wake of its cancellation, plenty of companies have been trying to swoop in to fill the gap that Apple left. The latest is Nomad, whose new Base Station Pro wireless charger promises to offer the kind of versatile charger that Apple couldn’t.
The big promise of AirPower was a wireless charger that didn’t need any exact placement — just drop up to three devices anywhere on the pad, and they would charge. That’s exactly the thing that Nomad says its achieved with the Base Station Pro, which, instead of the usual three coils that you’d typically see on a triple-device wireless charger, features an 18-coil matrix.
To pull this off, Nomad is partnering with Aira to license its FreePower wireless charging technology, which provides the single massive wireless charging service and the algorithms to figure out where the devices you’re charging are.
The rest of the charger looks pretty similar to Nomad’s other multiple-device wireless chargers, with a leather and aluminum design, although it thankfully has switched over to a 27W USB-C plug for charging instead of a proprietary barrel plug.
There are a few caveats: the Base Station Pro can only charge devices at up to 5W each, meaning that you won’t get fast charging, even if your devices support it. There’s also no word yet on price or an exact release date beyond a rough “November” date. Unlike AirPower, there’s no Apple Watch support (since Apple still insists on a proprietary charging standard for its wearables). And we haven’t yet been able to take the hardware for a spin ourselves, which means that we’re largely taking Nomad at its word that it does what it says it can do.
But assuming the Base Station Pro actually works, it might just usher in a new era of wireless charging tech that’s easier to use than ever before — a feat that not even Apple could pull off.