Apple is trying to build a better and longer-lasting battery by adding solar-power charging to its iPhones and iPods, according to a report.
Most wireless devices are using more power than ever, but battery technology is still plainly in the 20th century, according to the New York Times, so tech companies such as Apple are trying to get more power from the sun, the air or through induction.
Apple is using magnetic induction for its expected iWatch so it can charge wirelessly, an unnamed source reported. Apple may also be working on a way to add a "solar-charging layer" to the smartwatch for use in daylight. Apple also has a patent that can use kinetic energy from users to charge devices.
While battery technology may seem a bit unsexy, it's necessary. A battery, if it doesn't work, could be an explosive -- and it needs a lot of regulatory testing before it can be released to consumers.
Tony Fadell, a former Apple vice president, told the Times that Apple would be smart to create its own batteries rather than waiting for technology. “Hoping and betting on new battery technology to me is a fool’s errand,” Fadell, now the chief executive of Nest, said. “Don’t wait for the battery technology to get there, because it’s incredibly slow to move.”
In order for Apple to keep its edge it has to keep its devices working longer than its competition. One way to do that is obviously a better battery, so it behooves the tech company to work on alternative energy.