Next Surface Pen might sport wireless charging, FCC filing hints

Surface Pen
Surface Pen (Image credit: Windows Central)

What you need to know

  • A new FCC filing hints that we might see wireless charging included in the next Surface Pen.
  • The filing makes mention of a "charging coil," which is a component that would facilitate wireless charging.
  • Current Surface Pens use replaceable AAAA batteries.

We're just a couple of weeks away from Microsoft's October 2 Surface event, and a new FCC filing may give us a small hint at one upgrade to expect. Picked up by The Verge, the filing, which is attributed to Microsoft, makes reference to a stylus pen, indicating it's an updated version of the Surface Pen. However, the filing also mentions a charging coil, indicating that the next Surface Pen could feature wireless charging.

Both the updated Apple Pencil and Samsung's new S-Pen use charging coils as a mechanism for recharging the internal power sources that power them. Notably, the Apple Pencil magnetically docks to the top of the newest iteration of the iPad Pro to initiate charging. We could see a similar implementation on this year's Surface Pro.

The current Surface Pen uses replaceable batteries, and has for some time, so this would be a major shift in convenience. It will also be interesting to see whether — if the Surface Pen does pick up wireless charging — the move to an internal power source could come with a slimmer design.

We'll know for sure what Microsoft has planned when the event kicks off on October 2. For more on what we're expecting, check out our look at all the Surface hardware we expect to see at the event.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the former Editor-in-Chief of Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central, Android Central, and iMore as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl

  • Not having to change the battery on your pen for a year is more convenient than charging on occasion and it makes the pen more reliable. Also, Samsung's pens don't need to be charged in order to write on the screen; the more recent S-Pens have Bluetooth and gimmicky wand actions that require a battery. Charging while magnetically attached to a device might work though, as long as the charge lasts a long time.
  • Maybe wireless charging of rechargeable batteries is the best of both worlds?
  • Yeah, well I was thinking a non-removable battery with magnetic charging like the newer iPads sounds OK to me. I just don't want the idiotic sticking-your-pen-into-your-laptop charging that's pretty common. Ideally I want to never think about charging; second best after that is not thinking about the battery except once a year.
  • Unnecessary but still an ok move. My pen still has 56% battery left and it's 1.5 years old.
    While the pen/pencil form factor is too small for this minor issue, I would've thought that an always charged pen would actually degrade the battery life.
  • If your pen still has that much charge after that length of time then they clearly don't use much battery, so their impact on a Surface device would presumably be minimal.
  • If this enables a better writing experience (more power usage but also more accuracy/consistency) im all for it.
  • Back to Surface Pro 2 days, thought they had learned back then that its better to have a battery.