One of the more interesting trends in the last few years is wireless charging. In fact, there are three new iPhones(iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X) which all support wireless charging, making it the first time we’ve seen wireless charging in an iPhone.
However, it’s important to note that Android smartphones have had wireless charging for a while. For example the Samsung Galaxy S7, the LG V30 and the Galaxy S6 all have wireless charging.
So, let’s dive in with the all important question: What is wireless charging? Well, with wireless charging can charge your devices without plugging a wire into them charge them up. Just place them onto a wireless charging pad and they will begin charging up (kind of like the above picture).
Why does this technology matter? Well, we’ve all been in the situation where we have left the cable to connect our phone to the charger into our computer somewhere else. We might have left it down the sofa/couch or the cable might have broken (don’t worry i’ve had these things happen to me as well). It might be we’ve forgotten a cable at our friend’s/relative’s house and we’ve forgotten to get it back. By using wireless charging these situations might become a thing of the past.
Instead of plugging the phone into a charger using a wire, just place your phone onto a wireless charging pad and it just starts charging.
So, where does the power come from? As I said earlier, there is a wireless charging pad that your phone sits on. This pad is plugged into the wall socket (just like you would when plugging your phone into a wall with an iPhone 7).
There are also different standards for this technology. One of them is called Qi Wireless Charging. Most of the flagship smartphones now support it. Like I said at the top of the article, the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X are the latest to jump onto the wireless charging bandwagon. All three of these support the Qi wireless charging standard.
The other standard that’s out there is called PMA(power matters alliance) which is also known as AirFuel. The only differences between the two are the frequencies and protocols used to communicate with devices and control power management.
So at this point you might be thinking: “Adi, this sounds interesting. What do I need?”. Well, first of all, you need a phone which is compatible with one of the wireless charging standards. You also need a wireless charging pad capable of the same wireless charging standards. For example, let’s say you buy a Samsung Galaxy Note 8 which has the Qi wireless charging standard. You have to get a wireless charging pad which also supports the Qi wireless charging standard.
Of course, Apple’s newest iPhones (the iPhone 8, the iPhone 8 Plus and the iPhone X) all come with wireless charging as they support the Qi wireless charging standard. The recently released Galaxy S8 and the Galaxy Note 8 smartphones also support the standard.
Apple has their own wireless charging mat called AirPower (which will be released in Q1 2018). All the recently released iPhones and the recently released Apple Watch Series 3 will work with it. Even Apple’s AirPods (their wireless headphones) will also work with it. You can put up to three Apple devices onto the charging mat. With all of that being said, I should point out that the iPhone 8, iPhone 8 Plus and iPhone X will all work with any wireless charging pad that supports the Qi wireless charging standard. Of course with the other wireless charging pads you can only put one device and that’s it.
OK, let’s say you buy a phone that is not capable of wireless charging and you still want wireless charging? What do you do? Well, you can get special cases for your smartphone which makes your phone capable of Wireless charging. For example, with the iPhone 7, you can go out and get one of the Antye wireless charging cases(affiliate link) for less than £20. There are even wireless charging cases for iPhone 6(which was released a little more than 3 years ago).
If you are a fan of Mophie products then you will be glad to know that there is also a Mophie wireless charging case (which also has it’s own battery inside it) for the iPhone 7 which costs a little under £70 on Amazon UK(affiliate link). A little bit pricey but it’s totally worth the investment.
You would also need to get a wireless charging pad as well. Anker makes a wireless charging pad that supports the Qi wireless charging standard and at less than £17 on Amazon UK(affiliate link).
If you have an older phone like a Samsung Galaxy S4 (like I do), then you can get a Wireless Charging receiver(affiliate link) which plugs into your phone for about £12.
Of course, if you want to know if your phone supports the Qi Wireless charging standard, then your best bet is to check out the Qi product database.
I personally think that wireless charging is the way to go and it’s something that should be available to everyone (even if it means buying something to make your phone capable of doing wireless charging). There are a lot of benefits such as not having to fumble with wires or plugging your charging cable into your phone the wrong way round, or even forgetting a cable somewhere.
That’s going to do it for this guide on wireless charging. Are you currently using wireless charging on your phone? What has your experience been with it? Let me know in the comments.