How do you imagine your tech of the future? Maybe it's wearable, maybe life-saving, or maybe its pure fun — but we're pretty sure you didn't imagine it with wires attached, chaining you to the wall outlet with a 3-foot cord.
Wireless charging is much more common than you would think and is supported on an increasing amount of flagship Android devices such as the Samsung Galaxy S9, a few LG models, and a few Motos as well.
It's starting to take the market by storm, so if you're ready to set your phone next to you instead of crawling on hands and knees to find that outlet crammed behind your desk, we've got a few tips to help you join the future.
- The Ventev Wireless Charger makes portability and versatility at your fingertips with a design that comes apart and can be used in multiple different ways depending on what you need at the moment.
- Meanwhile, the Pasonomi Qi Fast Wireless Charging Stand makes waves with its sleek upright design and fast charging capabilities when using a compatible phone. It would make a great addition at the bedside or on a desk.
- And lastly, the FASTPAD Ultra-Slim Qi Wireless Charging Pad is ideal for those who want their charger to be near invisible and perfectly mesh with its surroundings. The slim plate will make it seem as if you've simply set your phone down for the time -- you'd never know it's charging.
Who Should Get This?
Wireless charging is an innovation with a huge amount of potential, but that potential isn't exactly helpful if your current device hasn't been constructed to support it. Before you purchase any wireless charging accessories, check the manufacturer website or your phone's settings to determine if it can actually charge wireless.
If it isn't built in, don't worry! There are plenty of adapters such as alternate backs and cases that can be added to make your phone wireless compatible, it will just take a little more work to get there.
On the other hand, if your phone does support wireless charging, you're all set! Wireless charging is great for those who have outlets in strange or annoying locations, or if you just want the convenience of a cordless and instant charging method on your tabletop rather than the nearest flat surface your cord reaches.
You can see and move your device with ease, and never worry about where you left your charging cable or whether it's become frayed beyond use. Overall it makes for a simpler, more streamlined experience and saves you the hassle and grey hairs.
Wireless Android Chargers: What to Look For?
Wireless chargers come made to two different standards, and some phones don't support both. There's the most common, Qi, and the competitor PMA. They function exactly the same, only on different wavelengths, which is why some devices may only support one or the other. You'll need to check with your manufacturer to see which kind(s) your phone can use.
Since you're going to be leaving this charger out in the open most of the time, it's a good idea to pick something that meets your expectations for aesthetics. Whether you want to match the decor or just have something in your favorite color, there are a fair variety of styles available that can help you meet your needs.
Unfortunately, we don't live in a perfect world, and almost anything wireless comes with a few sacrifices. With chargers, you'll find your phone charges much faster when wired unless using a special pad that either supports the Samsung Quick Charging feature (for select Samsung phones) or that has a high enough quality make. You'll have to keep in mind that every phone is different, so make sure the product you choose has explicitly said it works with your phone model.
The Best Wireless Charger for Android Phones: Our Picks in 2018
Note that all the wireless chargers recommended below are our own opinions. They are picked based on 1). the criteria listed above 2). our own personal using experience 3). reputation research we did, mostly gathering what other people say about the item.
Need to cover all your bases? With Ventev, you can use the charger as a pad or stand and it supports both Qi and PMA -- so there are no worries about whether or not it will work with your phone. It's compatible with Samsung, LG, Google, Motorola, HTC, Microsoft, Kyocera, and latest iPhone models as well.
- Can be broken apart for portability or mode switching.
- Supports Qi and PMA as well as delivering enough power for fast charging.
- Slightly on the pricier side for a wireless charger.
Prefer your phone upright and easily viewable? This wireless charging stand from Pasonomi keeps the display at a comfortable angle while offering the convenience of sleek and speedy charging platform.
- Available in black and white, whichever floats your boat or perhaps, matches your phone.
- Supports fast charging on Samsung phones and has a light-up indicator for when the device is in use.
- Can't turn off the LED indicator bar.
Want to keep it simple? This charging mat lays inconspicuously against the table almost like a coaster for your phone -- only you'll gain plenty of power while it's there. It's also water-resistant, so you won't have to worry if your bedside glass of water tips over during the night.
- Slim design is almost invisible and makes your wireless charging experience truly seamless and incredibly portable.
- Supports QC2.0 and 3.0. Flat design lets you use other devices such as a tablet instead of just a phone.
- Doesn't come with an AC adapter for plugging into a wall outlet.
Additional Tips and Tricks
For a quick reference sheet of phones that support wireless charging, there's a great overview available here.
Miffed that your smartphone hasn't caught up with the times yet? You can give it a helping hand with an adapter or case that adds Qi support for relatively cheap, as this contributor to CNET demonstrates in his article.
On the other hand, maybe charging isn't the issue. Sometimes you just run out of battery when you're out and about, so having a charger on hand wouldn't help anyway. In that case, we've collected some tips to help you boost your battery, like in this article from PCMag to make sure all your bases are covered.
We're far from a completely wireless future, but as technology progresses we've definitely begun to see the possibilities.
Wireless chargers that are already on the market are the first step to being completely free of cords and can make for a much smoother user experience with your phone by eliminating the finickiness of a charger port and hidden electrical sockets.
Does your phone currently support wireless charging? If so, tell us your favorite part in the comments below!
Andreas is an Apple and Microsoft fanboy who works with his Mac and lives with a PC at home. While he is not reading technology journals, you’ll probably find him playing online games with friends or hiking in the wild.