Wiki: Wireless Mobile Phone

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Pros and Cons of Wireless Charging SmartPhones

There are a number of SmartPhones with Qi wireless charging capability built in. And if your SmartPhone doesn't have built-in wireless charging capability, you can always buy a Qi wireless charging receiver for it. So why wouldn't anyone want the convenience of being able to set the phone down on a table and let it charge without dealing with cables?

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No Wear and Tear

Considering that an average person has to charge today's SmartPhone once a day, that's plugging in the USB cable once and pulling out the USB cable once every day. That's 365 times a year. And if you are a heavy user, you are probably charging your phone a few time a day. Anything with moving parts has greater wear and tear. And plugging in and pulling out the USB cable is probably one of the biggest wear and tear on the USB port and the USB cable.

And the wear and tear doesn't just occur on the phone side. It wears out the AC adapter, the computer's USB port, and the AC outlet as you pull the cable and AC adapter in and out.

Wireless charging do away with the wear and tear on the USB cable and port. Because all you do is set your SmartPhone down on the charger. No need to plug it in and unplug it any more. That's definitely a pro for wireless charging.

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Longer Charge Time

Wireless charging occurs at a lower wattage. That means it will generally take longer to charge your phone wireless than wired with a USB charging cable. And with today fast charging SmartPhone capabilities, it could feel like an eternity to charge your SmartPhone wirelessly. If you only charge your phone at night while you sleep, or if you have long periods of SmartPhone down time, then wireless charging makes a lot of sense. But if you are picking up your phone 15 minutes throughout the day and you can't just charge it while you dream, then wireless charging doesn't seem convenient to you.

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No Tethered Use

Some times heavy phone users are tethered to the AC outlet, because they are always on their phone. So their phone has to be plugged in while they use and charge their phone. If you are this type of user, then you can't really go with wireless charging. That's because when you pick up your phone from a wireless charger, you aren't charging it. So you are constantly out of battery and need to use the phone while you charge it, then wired is the way to go for you.

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No Cables

Wireless charging means you don't have to deal with cables. That means you don't have to worry about whether your SmartPhone has the microUSB port, the newer USB-C port, or the iPhone proprietary USB port. You don't have to worry about what cable and adapter you have to connect to your SmartPhone. If you are always misplacing your cable and AC adapter, maybe you should go with wireless charging to reduce your headache.

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Wireless Charger

Wireless charger comes in many shapes and sizes--square, round, triangle, rectangle. The triangle seems to be the most difficult to align to your phone, simply because it's geometry is easy to trick your perception of center. The rectangle one that is almost the size of your SmartPhone seems best, as it is easy to gauge your phone to the plate. Next comes the round ones. It's uniform shape makes it fairly easy to center your phone on it from the sides. But it's possible to be off a bit up and down. Any wireless charger that protrudes from your phone is best for easy alignment; unless the wireless charger is specifically made for your SmartPhone. See "Related Links" below for wireless charger we recommend.

Even though you don't have to deal with cables on the phone side, you still have to have a wireless charger on the other side. That means you still have to plug a USB cable into a wireless charger, plug the other end into a AC adapter. Then finally plug the AC adapter into the AC outlet. But fortunately you only have to do that once.

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Wireless Charging Adapter

If your SmartPhone has built-in wireless charging capability, then you are all set to go; you just have to get a wireless charger as mentioned above. If you don't have the built-in functionality, you can get a Qi wireless charging receiver for your phone for a few dollars.

If your SmartPhone has the newer USB-C port, then your life is easy, because you don't have to worry about the receiver cable orientation. But if your SmartPhone has a microUSB port, then you need to buy the wireless receiver with the correct cable orientation. We list all of the different orientation types in "Related Links" below to make your choice easy.

In addition, you'll have to think about how to apply the wireless charging adapter to the back of your SmartPhone. Some SmartPhones has enough space in the battery cover to hide the thin adapter. You can stuff it into some third-party cases. Or simply stick it onto the back of your SmartPhone with double-sided tape.

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Aiming Requires Practice

Wireless charging sounds fancy, exotic, and convenient. But convenience isn't always true. If you have built in wireless charging and get the wireless charger specifically for your phone, then everything will probably be easy. Because a complete system like the Google LG Nexus 5 and its wireless charger has magnetic coupling that provides the best alignment for charging your phone.

But if your phone and charger aren't specifically made for each other, aligning the phone to the wireless charger can be a nightmare comparing to plugging in a USB cable. It's the most sickening feeling when you wake up to find your uncharged SmartPhone on top of the wireless charger.

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