It might surprise you to find out that wireless charging is actually fairly old technology. It was first invented in the 19th century by Tesla, however, until recently, we didn't have any reason to use it on a daily basis.
The arrival of smartphones and Apple technology has created a demand for wireless charging like never before! The market has flooded with different devices all claiming they offer more power and faster charging than one another.
Picking the right Apple wireless charger for you can be a challenge and choosing the wrong one could be a real waste of your hard-earned cash.
That's why we've put together this handy guide on everything you need to know about iPhone wireless charging! Read on to find out the best chargers on the market and about which devices you can charge using them.
How Does Wireless Charging Work?
Using the best wireless charger means you no longer need to plug your phone or device in when charging it. Instead, you simply place it on top of your charging mat.
The charging mat transfers energy to the receiver in the back of your phone using electromagnetic induction. The charging mat contains a copper coil, which it uses to create the alternating electromagnetic field. Your phone's receiver also features a coil.
This coil converts the electromagnetic energy back into electricity. It then feeds this into your phone's battery, charging it up!
For this to work, the two coils have to be close enough to one another to transfer the energy. You don't have to line them up exactly but your device and the charging mat need to be in contact.
Certain materials may make the energy transfer slower or stop it completely. For example, electromagnetic energy won't be able to pass through a metal case and a thick case may slow it down. The plastic and glass of your standard phone casing shouldn't stop it.
This means that when you want to use your wireless charger, you may need to remove your phone, laptop or iPad case. If charging seems slow then this is a handy tip to keep in mind!
The majority of wireless chargers use something called Qi. This is a standard that the Wireless Power Consortium (WPC) developed to measure inductive charging. It applies to chargers than transfer energy over 40mm or less.
A Qi-certification is a good sign that a product offers you safe, high-quality charging.
What Do You Need to Support Wireless Charging?
Wireless charging is really quite simple.
You just need a charging mat or tabletop charger and devices that are compatible with wireless charging. You will also need a plug socket so you can plug in your wireless charging mat.
As already mentioned, in order for a device to charge wirelessly it needs to be fitted with a receiver coil. Before you buy a device for wireless charging, make sure it has one.
Often we associate wireless charging with phone charging. But iPhones aren't the only Apple devices that you can charge wirelessly.
Which Apple Devices Support Wireless Charging?
A number of Apple devices support wireless charging. These include:
- The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus
- The iPhone X, XS Max, XS and XR
- The iPhone 11, 11 Pro Max and 11 Pro
- Apple watches
- Apple iPad Pencils
Unfortunately, iPads and Mac computers are still some way off being compatible with wireless chargers.
It's also important to check that the wireless charger you choose will charge an Apple device. Some chargers are designed to only support Android devices, for example. These won't be any use for your iPhone or AirPods!
Benefits of Using a Wireless Charger
There are loads of benefits to using wireless charging for your Apple devices.
One of the greatest benefits of having a wireless charger is that it means you can charge all of your devices in one go, using just one plug socket. You simply pop all of your devices on top of the mat or block and let it do the rest. This means you can say goodbye to endless tangles of wires and USB cables when charging.
If you need to use a device quickly when charging this also makes things much simpler. For example, if you have to answer the phone when it's charging you can pick it up straight away without unplugging it. Or simply hit speakerphone and leave it charging away!
Some places, such as cafes and offices, also have a number of charging mats available for people to use. So if you have a wireless-compatible device you can charge it wherever you go.
Wireless charging is also a safer way to charge your phone's battery up. It doesn't put a strain on your device's charging port, which means that it will last longer.
This is particularly good news for newer models of the iPhone, which use the charging point for headphones. Protecting this port means you can guarantee better sound connection for your headphones for longer.
Whether you're using your iPhone to take photos or to stay fit, keeping these devices charged up is key to your success. So, without further ado, let's take a look at some of the best wireless chargers on the market at the moment.
The Mophie 3-in-1 Wireless Charging Pad
The Mophie charging pad is so successful for Apple devices that it is even available on the Apple website itself. It has been a welcome alternative to Apple's AirPower even before the charger was cancelled in March 2019.
At just over $200, it is definitely a premium charger but it offers quality. In fact, it could be considered the best wireless charger for iPhones and other Apple devices.
It has been designed to charge three devices in one go: your iPhone, AirPods and Apple Watch. The charging mat provides allocated spaces for your Apple devices, meaning you can easily fit all three devices at the same time.
However, you don't have to worry about placing your devices precisely on the mat to ensure they charge. They should charge up regardless of their positioning.
The rivets also mean that your devices will stay secure while they're charging. The Apple Watch stand even offers a magnetic fastener to keep your watch in place. This means you save space by not having to lay your watch flat on the charging mat.
Secure fastening also means you don't have to worry about them getting knocked off and not charging when you're not looking. It's a peace-of-mind that not every other charger can boast about.
In terms of charging capability, it delivers quality, fast charging even with three devices on board. This matches the charging time of a 7.5-watt charger. The Mophie 3-in-1 is also powerful enough to charge through a thin phone case without much difficulty.
The Moshi Otto Q
Unlike the Mophie 3-in-1, the Moshi Otto Q is an iPhone wireless charger that gives a little more thought to design. The name 'Otto' is a reference to its role as an ottoman for your phone. So if you're looking for something stylish for your nightstand, this could be the charger for you.
It has a covering of cool grey fabric and a slim profile that would look at home in any bedroom or living room. But style isn't the only thing the Moshi has to offer.
At around $58 it is much smaller and cheaper than any Mophie charger. It might not fit three devices at ones but it doesn't scrimp on quality charging.
Using a 9-watt adapter, it reliably charges to a 7.5-watt capacity. On top of this, it can charge through fairly thick phone cases without a problem.
The Moshi Otto Q plugs into your wall using a plug and USB-A to USB-C cables. This is great as it means you'll still be able to use the charger if you misplace the original cable. Simply replace it with one of the many USB cables you undoubtedly already have!
Cable versatility is also great as it means you can swap the original charging cable out for a longer one. This easily overcomes one of the Moshi's downsides: a short charging lead.
With this in mind, it's a great option for anyone looking for a charger that won't break the bank.
The RAVPower RP-PC069 Wireless Charging Stand
As the name of this charger might suggest, the RAVPower is all about practical, efficient phone wireless charging. At $72 it sits neatly between the Mophie and the Moshi and matches their quality charging while offering its own unique benefits.
Its upright charging stand is sleek and stylish and offers great space-saving solutions for charging. It also means you can use your phone's front-facing camera and facial recognition technology while it charges.
It can support charging for both Android and Apple phones, offering 7.5-watt charging for the latter. It also comes with a 24-watt power adapter.
One of the best things about the RAVPower charger is that is features cooling technology to stop your phone's coils getting too hot as it charges. This protects your phone from overheating and slowing down, which often occurs when charging.
It charges using a micro-USB cable, which is braided for extra durability.
The Anker Wireless Charger
Last but by no means least, the Anker wireless charger is great for anyone looking for a charger on a budget. For just $30 dollars, this charger offers some impressive benefits.
Its compact size means that you can only fit one phone at a time on it. However, this makes the Anker charger ideal for anyone who is on-the-go. It will take up next to no room in your bag.
It's also great at charging through phone cases, another factor that makes it handy when you're out and about. It will charge through a 5mm plastic or glass case without any problem. And the charging base has a handy feature to let you know if anything is in the way.
If your device is charging properly the indicating light will flash green. If there's a problem, such as something in the way of the base, it will flash blue to let you know.
The charger features great bonuses, such as battery protection and temperature control. It also offers radiation shielding. On top of this, it is available in sleek black or stylish blue and has great customer reviews.
Unfortunately, one area you may have to compromise on with this charger is speed. It offers 5-watt charging, which is better than some chargers but not as good as the others on this list.
It's something you should definitely think about when picking your charger. What's more important for you: great pricing or super-quick charging?
How Long Does an Apple Wireless Charger Take to Charge Your Device?
The speed of wireless charging can vary somewhat depending on several factors.
Different makes of chargers offer different charging speeds. Some charging mats may also slow down if they have a lot of devices on them.
A standard 7.5 watt Apple wireless charger offers the same charging speed as a 5-watt non-wireless charger. Tested on an iPhone 8 Plus with no battery left it offered the following charging speed:
- It took five minutes to reach a 2% charge.
- It took thirty minutes to reach a 20% charge.
- It took an hour and fifteen minutes to reach a 50% charge.
- It took two hours and thirty minutes to reach a 98% charge.
For an accurate idea of how long a wireless charger takes, it's a good idea to check out recent customer reviews. These will often detail charging time for various devices and may be more reliable than some website descriptions.
Some chargers offer specialist 'high-speed' charging. Before you buy one of these, you should definitely check that previous users can back up these claims.
Time to Get Shopping!
When it comes to finding the right Apple wireless charger for you there are several things you should take into consideration. Price, charging speed and design are all key factors, which vary for charger-to-charger.
For more help deciding, make sure you have a look at customer reviews before you buy. And if you're ready to get shopping, check out these brilliant Apple charging options. You won't regret it!