Wireless chargers offer a practical solution for anyone who owns a modern phone. They tidy up dangling cables on your desk and in your car.Luckily, you can find affordable wireless chargers, allowing you to have them wherever they’re needed — in the car, on your nightstand and at your home or office desk — to help keep your phone juiced up and ready for whatever you need.
With all the new upgrades and features in phones, as well as chargers, how do you know if a wireless charger works properly with your particular phone make and model? Below, we offer some advice and shine some light on the factors to consider when picking the best wireless charger for your iPhone or Android.
Choose the Qi Standard for Your Wireless Charging Systems
So how does wireless charging work? Wireless chargers work through inductive charging, which is created by an electromagnetic field in its coils. When you place a Qi-enabled iPhone or Android on a wireless charger, an electric field converts into a direct current (DC) and charges the phone.
Today, Qi is the most common form of wireless charging, which is used by both Apple and Android phones like Samsung. However, it’s best to check and make sure your phone or phone accessories (like earbud wireless charging cases) use the same charging system and are indeed, Qi-compatible. Most flagship modern phones are Qi-certified, so getting a Qi wireless charger is a safe bet.
Certified Qi chargers can deliver up to15 watts (based on the phone). Even if your phone normally charges with an 18-watt plug-in charger, a 15-watt wireless charger should stand the test of time for your future phone purchases. Currently, regular wired (plug in) charging for the iPhone 13 caps out at 27 watts while the Samsung Galaxy S21 caps out at 25 watts. But in the end, 15 watts is more than sufficient for a wireless charger and meets Wireless Fast charge criteria.
One thing to keep in mind is that even the best wireless charger will not charge your phone as fast as with an adapter and cable. If you’re someone who needs to boost their phone battery in a jiffy, choose a high-quality wireless charger that includes a wall adapter and a USB-C cable.
Okay, now that you understand the technical side of choosing the best wireless charger for your phone, let’s talk about the features. Wireless chargers come with a number of different features that can help make or break your decision.
The Design Choices: Pads, Stands and Mounts
Wireless chargers can be used in a lot of places and that’s what makes them so versatile. But it’s up to you to decide what style charger you need in each location. We’ve broken down the common styles below to demonstrate their practical uses:
Pads: Pad-style wireless chargers are flat circular pucks or rectangular blocks. They are commonly used in areas where surface space is limited, like a desk or counter.
Stands: Wireless charging stands are perfect for nightstands, propping the phone up so you can roll over and see the time, hit snooze or whatever. Typically, these modular charging systems (like Scosche’s BaseLynx) feature extra charging ports and extensions that can support and charge earbud cases, smartwatches and tablets.
Car mounts: Wireless car mounts are for exactly that, they hold and wirelessly charge your phone in your vehicle. They clip to a vent or mount to dashboard or windshields, displaying your phone hands-free while you drive. Of course, there’s also magnetic mounts like Scosche’s MagicMount that use powerful but device-safe, Neodymium magnets.They hold MagSafe iPhones 12 and 13 straight out of the box and other phones using a provided MagicPlate®
One word of advice: The best wireless chargers will offer a sturdy grip on the base or on the clip to keep phones secure or to use a MagSafe wireless charger that keeps your phone from sliding on sharp turns in the car. A close and consistent connection is the key to efficient wireless charging.
An attractive LED light to notify you of your phone’s charging status is a nice feature to have. However, just make sure it’s not too bright, especially if it’s on a bedside charging station. One wonderful feature of LED indicators is the ability to auto-adjust its intensity level. This is perfect for night driving when you want to avoid glares.
Foreign Object Detection
All Qi-certified wireless chargers come with Foreign Object Detection (FOD). The FOD safety feature will shut down the Qi wireless charger should something besides your phone rest on it. Why is this necessary? Well, uncertified chargers which can’t differentiate objects have the potential to overheat. But with FOD, a quality charger will not trigger itself on if, say, a book or coin fell onto the pad.
Find the Best Wireless Charger for You
Wireless chargers can offer lots of bells and whistles, but it’s important to choose the features that work best for you and your phone. Choosing a quality charger from Scosche makes it easy. Our Qi-certified wireless chargers come with all the features listed above, from LED power indicators to FOD. What’s more is that we offer wireless chargers in every design, too. So find the best wireless charger for you!