The wireless, inductive charging of smartphones is becoming increasingly popular. The charging technology, which is still in its infancy, has advantages but also disadvantages. Five current Qi chargers for iPhone, AirPods and Co.
By now, die-hard Apple fans are probably stashing dozens of white plugs and even more cables with various sockets in various drawers and boxes. Unless they messed it up at some point. As early as 2008, some smart people noticed that the chaos of cables and plugs cannot be the last word and founded the Wireless Power Consortium, WPC for short. The sole goal of this non-profit organization: cross-manufacturer standards for wireless (or cordless) power supplies. And because the big players in the tech industry such as Apple, Samsung, Nokia, Huawei and Google were among the several hundred companies involved, a new era of energy transmission began in 2012.
Apple only jumped on the inductive charging bandwagon in 2017 with its iPhone 8 and iPhone X. In Silicon Valley, they had been working on their own AirPower charging mat for a long time, which was supposed to inductively charge several iOS devices at the same time. The project failed because even the smartest Apple engineers couldn’t outsmart the physics. The mat had probably gotten too hot during tests because of the many built-in coils. The project was temporarily put on hold in March 2019. Nevertheless, the many millions of iPhone users around the world no longer have to hang up their smartphones. Recharge your iPhone with the following wireless chargers.
1. Apple MagSafe (iPhone 12/13)
With the MagSafe, Apple has at least given all users of the iPhone series 12 and 13 a device for wireless charging. The Californians work with a magnetic holder. The iPhone is placed with the back on the charging cradle, holds thanks to the magnet technology and charges with up to 15 watts. So you have to be patient for almost three hours if you want to plug your iPhone back in fully charged. Important: There should be no metallic objects on the Apple MagSafe. Credit cards, ID cards or other cards with magnetic strips or RFID chips should also not be between the charger and the iPhone when charging.
2. Anker PowerWave
With its PowerWave, Anker has established a charger that is designed to wirelessly charge all common Qi-enabled smartphones. It is optimized for batteries from Samsung devices that are charged with 10 watts. For iPhones (from iPhone 8), the manufacturer only guarantees a charging current of 5 watts. The smartphones can be placed on the charging stand in portrait or landscape format and should also be charged through standard protective cases. Practical: the accessory includes a 90 centimeter long USB charging cable. It is available in black and white.
3. 3-in-1 wireless charger with LED bedside lamp
This clever idea should please all those who go to bed with their iPhone at night and want to start the day with a fully charged battery in the morning. The charger from Wilit is basically a bedside lamp with a small shelf made of imitation wood for iPhones or other Qi-enabled smartphones. The 60 warm-white LEDs are dimmable. The inductive charging power for iPhones should be around 5 watts.
Inductive charging of iPhones: advantages and disadvantages
4. Lechly Wireless Charger 4-in-1
As a rule, Apple fans have other smart end devices from the Californian IT giant in addition to an iPhone. And sooner or later they also need an energy boost. Mostly at the same time. Now you can attach each device to its own charging cable, supply it with energy using a charging case or inductively. But elegant is different than this tangle of cables. The Lechly charger has room for everyone. AirPods, Apple Watch and iPhone can be charged at the same time. There is also still space on the charging station for the Apple Pencil.
5. Nillkin Magic Tags (iPhone 5/6 and 7)
Anyone who still owns an iPhone from the older generation has had a bad time with inductive charging for a long time. But with a small additional tool, you can now save yourself the charging cable for the iPhone 5, 6 and 7. A plastic plate acts as a Qi receiver. The iPhone is connected to the plate, which is just a few tenths of a millimeter thick, using a flexible cable and then “glued” it to the back of the smartphone. The receiving coil integrated in the Nillkin Magic Tags induces the voltage of the magnetic field generated in the Qi charger, which ultimately supplies the smartphone battery with energy.
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Note: The article was first published in September 2021.