Getting annoyed with the many cables you have to carry, especially to charge your smartphone, iPad or power bank? Maybe it’s time to try to enter the wireless world, which while maybe dominated by the audio space like wireless earbuds are trending nowadays.
Wireless smartphone chargers other names are charging pads or charging stands. Regardless how people call them, there have been various models which are coming into the market that provide such great solutions for more practical people. Why not? Thanks to the wireless chargers, you won’t need to deal with complex cables when charging.
How it works
The way a wireless charger works is to send power via electromagnetic induction from the charger to your cell phone via the coils placed in both units. The induction coil in the charging unit will produce energy which is then received by the receiver coil in your cellphone unit to be converted into electricity which is then sent to the battery. Sounds pretty complicated so far, but it’s actually similar to how you charge an electric toothbrush or charge your Apple Watch without plugging in the cable. Actually you still have to plug the actual charger into the wall socket, the difference is that you don’t need to plug the cable into the micro usb / lightning / usb-c slot on your cell phone, you just have to put your cellphone on top of the cordless charging pad. It’s easy, right?
Which gadgets can use the wireless charger?
Looking to try using a wireless charger right away? Of course, you have to have a compatible cell phone to be able to enjoy wireless charging technology. Your device must have Qi capability (pronounced “chee”). Qi capability is the way to assign the industrial standard for the performance of short distances wireless charging technology.
The most distance Qi could accommodate was about 40mm. Qi-enabled charging is available on the latest version of Apple iPhone 8 and iPhone, Android phones are available starting from the Samsung Galaxy S6 version and the latest Samsung android version, there are still Sony Xperia XZ2 and various other androids. Several other gadgets like the Apple Watch and AirPods also use Qi-enabled wireless charging.
Best wireless charger
There are of course many factors to consider when choosing the best wireless charger for you. Some of the factors to consider are as follows:
Most wireless chargers come as a charging pad that looks like a disc and is a charging stand. Disc or pad chargers require you to place your phone flat on top of the disc or pad, while stand chargers support your phone while it is charging. Of course they both work in the same way, transmitting electricity inductively through the coil in the charger to the coil in your device, only the size is different. Charging pads are usually smaller and portable, but because your phone has to be placed horizontally, you have to pick up the phone to just see the notifications that come to your phone. On the one hand the charging stand is bigger, but you can check the notifications that get to your phone in a flash. The wireless charging stand has recently expanded towards a mount that can be used while you are in the car. Your phone will be clamped in such a way that it attaches to the wireless charger without moving easily, so that charging can still be done while you are looking at the navigation map from your phone.
If you ask me, which one is better? Charging pad or charging stand or charging mount? It all comes back to your needs. For those of you who travel a lot, you certainly need a charging pad which is much more portable than a charging stand, all you have to do is remove the cable and charger and put them in your bag. Unlike those of you who travel a lot but are always in the car, of course you need a charging mount that can charge your cell phone in the car at any time. If you use the charging pad and put it in your car, your cellphone may fall because it is only placed horizontally on the disc-shaped pad. To choose a charging mount, you also have to be careful to ensure that your cell phone does not move easily from the mounting provided, because the distance between the charging coil must be close to the coil on your cell phone, and your car may pass through uneven roads or potholes. For the charging stand, it is very useful for those of you who are always busy at the office and make sure important notifications get to your cell phone. You can place the wireless charging stand on your desk to make it easier for you to check the notifications that come to your cell phone immediately and decide to ignore or answer messages / calls.
- Charging speed
In fact, while it looks very promising, wireless charging still can’t beat the speed of charging using cables. As modern wireless charging technology is starting to develop a lot, the highest charging speed currently available is 15 watts. It should also be noted, besides the charging pad can accommodate 15 watts, your cellphone must also be able to accept 15 watts of induction power. This 15 watt wireless charger also requires a QuickCharge power adapter to reach its maximum speed, which you usually have to buy separately. Most of the Android devices have 10 watts of power while the latest iPhones are still at 7.5 watts, so you could say getting the fastest charger might still be difficult to realize for now as it also depends on your mobile device.
- The thickness of your cellphone case
If you’re using a wireless charger, it’s a good idea to pay attention to your cell phone case too. If your cell phone case is too thick, the distance between the wireless charging pad and your cell phone becomes too far, so that the charging speed of your cellphone is also reduced and even disconnected. So make sure you’re using a case that’s compatible with wireless charging.