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No Strings Attached?: The Pros and Cons of Wireless Phone Chargers

No Power Cord Required

Wireless cell phone chargers are a way of charging phones without plugging your phone into the traditional cable. Wireless charging is relatively new and is gaining popularity with Smartphone users who find it easy to use just by placing the phone over the charging pad. You no longer need to plug in and unplug your phone every time you need to charge it.

How Does a Wireless Charger Work?

Wireless charging produces an electromagnetic field found in once device to induce an alternative electric current in a metal receiver coil inside another device. It is totally safe to use since electricity is essentially produced inside the charging device, so no shocks or sparks are produced.

So far there are two major groups producing wireless chargers: the Wireless Power Consortium and the AirFuel Alliance (formerly A4WP and PMA). The Wireless Power Consortium’s Qi Standard has been adopted by almost 90% of all wireless charging devices. Qi in-built wireless charging means that you do not have to a charger from the same parent company.

For example, Samsung wireless chargers work perfectly with Apple devices.

Advantages of a Wireless Cell Phone Charger

Convenience

Wireless chargers eliminate the need for cables which easily get tangled. Just place your device on the charging station and you are good to go. Wireless chargers also enable users to charge multiple devices simultaneously, including AirPods, laptops and tablets.

Integration of Devices

For Qi, wireless charger integration is easy for similar Qi-enabled cell phones, no matter the shape or size of its charging socket. Charge your iPhone X next to your Samsung S8 and AirPods simultaneously.

Security

Hackers have found ways to plant malware in public charging spaces like airports and coffee places. That’s why you are asked to never plug in your iPhone in an unknown cable. Wireless chargers are relatively malware-proof and great for your device’s security.

Durability

Unlike traditional chargers, wireless chargers do not need constant plugging and unplugging. This maintains the connection between the fray and lighting cable, maintaining durability. In terms of sustainability, fewer charging cables are predicted to be manufactured once wireless charging is embraced fully by cell phone manufacturers.

Drawbacks of Wireless Chargers

Efficiency

Wireless chargers tend to charge at a slower rate than traditional wired chargers. Some users have complained that their devices get hot after prolonged charging. Tests on some wireless chargers show efficiency levels of 30%-80%.

Mobility

When docked in the charging pad, it is a lot harder to use your phone unlike when it is charging on a wired station. The charging pad makes it impossible to you use your phone while charging unless you pick up the device and remove it from the charging mat.

Best Wireless Chargers to Buy

Anker Fast Wireless Charger Charging Pad

Anker Wireless charger is one of the most popular wireless chargers in the market. It supports Fast Charging and has an LED light to show the charging status. It is reasonably priced but you need to purchase a separate wall charger from the company. The Anker PowerPort Wireless 5 Pad is a great variation in case you are looking for an alternative.

IKEA Nordmärke Triple Pad Wireless Charging Pad

Developed by the furniture store IKEA, it has a wood-like pad that complements the furniture around the house. Design aside, the IKEA Nordmärke triple pad wireless charging pad can charge up to three Qi devices at the same time.

It has an additional USB port that can charge a fourth device and is great for the whole family. It is a little on the expensive side, but if you need a cheaper version go for the IKEA single phone wireless charging pad.

Kroma Wireless Charging Pad

Kroma has one of the smallest charging pads measuring 3 x 3.7 x 1.1 inches. It has a durable design with a lifetime warranty. It does not feature Fast Charge, so it will take longer for your Qi-based phone to charge. LED lights indicate the charging status and it comes at an amazingly low price. Kroma’s compact size makes it appropriate for usage in the car.

RAVPower Fast Wireless Charger

This charger combines speed and design, edging out most of the other competing chargers in the market with a 24W power brick. This charger is super fast; RAVPower installed protective mechanisms so that smartphones can be protected against overcharging, overvoltage and overheating.

Samsung Fast Charge Wireless Charging Stand

Samsung has a brilliant wireless charging stand that is compatible with all Qi-enabled phones. It has a Fast Charge feature for Samsung products like S7 and S8, but standard charge for other Qi-based devices. It comes in a variety of colors such as silver, gold and white. Also included is a wall charger.

It has a compact design measuring 3.3 x 3.9 x 4.5 inches and weighing just 0.8 ounces. The Samsung charging stand allows you to make calls and listen to music while the device is charging.

Mophie Wireless Charging Base

After the release of the iPhone X and iPhone 8, the Morphie wireless charging base was announced as an official wireless charger for the two devices. It has an attractive design and also has fast charging speeds for Apple iOS 11.2 devices and above. The only drawback is that due to its small size it can only charge one device at a time.

Belkin Boost Up Wireless Charging Pad

Belkin supports Fast Charge on Qi devices, especially iPhones running on iOS 11.2 and above. It has a sleek look and the wall adapter is removable.