Wireless Smartphone Chargers

Wireless chargers.  You’ve probably never used one.  Your phone probably isn’t even compatible without an additional accessory.  No matter.  All of the new phones are coming “Qi Wireless Charging” enabled, so you’re better off learning about it now.

As you may know, in April I bought the Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge.  This is the first phone I’ve owned that was wireless charging capable.  Over the past 5 months I’ve slowly replaced all of my charging stations with wireless chargers: Bedside table?  Check.  End table by sofa?  Check.  Desk at work?  Check.  In fact, the only place I’m still plugging in my phone is in the car…  believe me, I’m working on that.

Wireless charging is great.  It uses inductive charging to charge the phone.  Depending on 6171enibx4l-_sl1000_the strength of the charger it may even charge directly through your case (as long as it isn’t one of those crazy extra thick otterbox cases!).  Here’s how it works: You plug the charger into the wall using any 2 amp wall charger.  Then you put your phone down on the charger.  Hooray, it’s charging!

Yup, the phone will charge a bit slower than it does when you plug it in (see “Fast Charging” below for the solution to this).  There’s some energy loss with this method.  I like it for overnight charging, and just the ease of keeping it charged.

What?  That’s it?  Pretty much.  Oh, it’s possible you’ll have to try it a few times to find that “sweet spot.”  And there’s certainly a bunch of cheap chargers out there that’ll break.  On the plus side, there’s also a bunch of inexpensive (relatively) wireless chargers you can buy from companies like Pleson and Anker (and others) that work great and won’t break the bank.  You’re going to spend about $20 or so, which is MUCH more expensive than a $5 plug, but, hey… they’re kinda awesome!

If you can buy one with  multiple coils then I recommend that.  It’s save you the stress of trying to place your phone “just right” on the charger.

One other thing I should mention.  If your phone is Qualcomm quick charge capable you can buy a “Fast Charger” that will dramatically increase the charge rate.

Are there any side effects?  Hmmm… I’ve noticed that my phone gets a bit warmer when charging wirelessly.  It’s also difficult to use it while it’s on the charger.  If you’re using one of the magnetic car mounts I’ve reviewed in the past, the metal plate you have in yor case will block the wireless charging coils.  You can fix this by moving the plate down to the lowest point on your case so it doesn’t block them.  That’s how I do it and it works fine.

There’s also  two basic shapes: 1) Round and flat that lay on the desk, and 2) Vertical stand up chargers.  I LOVE the vertical chargers.

That’s it!  If your phone is wireless capable go out and buy yourself a charger.  If you can’t justify the price, ask for one as a holiday gift!  It’s exactly the kind of frivolous item people love giving as presents.

Live the dream!

-Humble Dave

Wireless Chargers I’ve tested (and liked) – Amazon

Pleson Fast Wireless Charger

GooDee 2 Coil Fast Wireless Charging Stand

iVoler 3 Coil Fast Wireless Charging Stand

 

Disclosure: I received these products at a discount in exchange for testing and reviewing it.  All opinions are my own.
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Product Review #4 – Magnetic Car Air Vent Phone Mount

My phone used to sit in the cup holder.  I had to pick it up and hold it in my hand if I wanted to use it (which of COURSE I never did while I was driving!).  I never wanted one of those windshield mounts, and I don’t like sticking things onto the dash (SIDE NOTE: the last “easy to remove” sticker I had on my dash is still there.  Spoiler alert: NOT EASY TO REMOVE!).

mount magnetic plate
So, when I started receiving tester products from companies at discounted prices for
reviewing, I discovered these air vent mounts.  They seemed interested and I ordered a few different styles.  They all work BASICALLY the same way.  They clip onto the air vent in your car.  The face is magnetic, and it comes with metal plates you either stick to the back of your phone or simply place in between your phone and its case.  Then, like magic, you place your phone on the mount and it stays there.

As I said, I’ve tested a bunch of them.  There are only three significant differences: The strength of the magnet, the way it clips to the vent, and is it adjustable.

  1. Magnet Strength – You stand a good chance of finding one with a solid magnet.  All of the ones I’ve listed below are good (the NEARPOW magnet seems a little weaker).  Taking a sharp curve on any of these will make the phone spin so it’s hanging upside down, but I haven’t had any fall off.Nearpow mount
  2. Clip to vent – Some just push on and some tighten.  They’re all designed for horizontal vents.  Mine are vertical.  I found that placing it all the way at the bottom and in the corner is the best way to keep it from flopping side-to-side on vertical vents.
  3. Adjustability – Some let you change the angle (FOSTO, NEARPOW, WizGear).  I love this feature because it enables me to point the phone at me, instead of it facing straight out of the dash.

There is only one real negative I’ve found using these mounts.  The metal plate can get in the way of wireless charging (if your phone even has that capability).  To compensate, I keep the mount all the way at the bottom of my case, below the charging coil.  Works perfectly this way.

These magnetic air-vent mounts for cell phones were a genius idea and whomever came up with the idea should have their face stamped in the front of each one.  If you don’t have one , buy one.

Wow, so this post ended up much longer than I thought.  Fortunately, I always have a lot of great things to say!

-Humble Dave

tl;dr Buy one, they’re great!

Magnetic Mounts I’ve Tested (all Amazon links):

FOSTO Magnetic Air Vent Mount – $10.99
Mengo Magna-Snap Mini Mangetic Car Mount (2-pack)
NEARPOW Magnetic Air Vest Mount – $7.99
WizGear Magnetic Mount – $8.99

Disclosure: I received these products at a discount in exchange for testing and reviewing it.  All opinions are my own.