With the release of the Pixel Slate, Google has firmly cemented, for better or worse, that Chrome OS is their leading option for tablets, not necessarily Android. One thing these tablets haven’t had that most recent Android phones offer is Qi wireless charging, but that’s changing with the upcoming “Flapjack” Chrome OS tablet.
Spotted by the folks at Chrome Unboxed, a code change was posted to the Chromium Gerrit earlier this month, revealing a very interesting detail about “Flapjack.” The tablet will have a Qi-compatible wireless charging chip, marking the first Chrome OS device with the feature.
According to a spec sheet also uncovered by Chrome Unboxed, Flapjack’s wireless charging chip is capable of receiving up to a 15W charge. For reference, that’s only about 50% more than the Pixel Stand offers for the Pixel 3.
Considering many Chrome OS devices charge at 30-60W via USB-PD, this may not be intended as the tablet’s primary source of power. The convenience of just dropping the device onto a large charging pad when you’re done with it could certainly make up for the difference in speed though.
Other details about Flapjack are still somewhat scarce, but we do know for sure that it will run on the octa-core MediaTek MT8183 processor, and have a Wacom stylus. It may even come in 8-inch and 10-inch variants, both featuring a resolution of 1920×1200. We’re not yet sure who is making Flapjack, as the production company associated with many Flapjack commits, Huaqin, hasn’t made a Chromebook in 4 years.
As this device is the first of its kind, some kinks are still being worked out, such as Chrome OS receiving power via wireless charge and outputting power to USB-C accessories simultaneously. Surely, Chrome OS will also need new UI to communicate Flapjack’s wireless charging feature to users.
With these little details still needing to be worked out, it will likely be a number of months before we see wireless charging arrive in Chrome OS, but it’s definitely an interesting new direction for the platform.