9 Comments

Summary:

Months after the Nexus 4 arrived on sale, the promise of charging the device without connecting a wire is here. For $59, Google is now selling the Nexus 4 Wireless Charging Orb.

Nexus 4 charging orb

It was a long time coming, but Google Nexus 4 phone owners can soon charge their handset without attaching a wire. On Monday, Google’s Play Store began offering the official Wireless Charging Orb for the Nexus 4. The small, round magnetic charger costs $59. Google says it should ship within one week of ordering.

The angled orb must be plugged into a standard outlet for charging to work. So the wireless part has to do with the Nexus 4 itself. Placing the phone on the charging pad will fully re-charge the phone’s battery in four hours. There are no additional features on the orb itself; it simply lets you put your phone down and top off or refill the integrated battery.

Wireless charging is one of those great-sounding technologies that really hasn’t gone mainstream. I though that might change with the Palm Pre a few years back; that handset had a wireless charging puck and special phone cover. Of course, we all know how that went: Palm was consumed by HP and the phone line died off.

Part of the issue with wireless charging is that requires a special cover or component in devices, which add costs. Various wireless charging standards haven’t helped either: Placing a device on an incompatible charging pad means you’ll have to spend even more money for a different solution. And in the case of the Nexus 4, a $59 price tag may keep some away from world of wireless charging.

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  1. Not sure I see the advantage here. You still need a plug, $60’s, and it takes 4hrs to charge. What’s the benefit?

    1. I’d rather have a dock using lock pins like the N1 and N7 have. 3 years and two phones later, I still use my N1 and dock for playing music. The bluetooth made it a magnificent dock.

  2. Felix Hoenikker Monday, February 11, 2013

    Cool my tooth brush in 80’s did the same thing…….what took so long? Seriously? I should be impressed? And please don’t try to utilize this for car charging…..meh =(

  3. The palm pre had this three years ago.

  4. alexmedawayhasleftthebuilding Tuesday, February 12, 2013

    is this completely useless or am i missing sth?

  5. PrepaidWireless Guy Tuesday, February 12, 2013

    This is an insane comment/article. As was noted, the Palm Pre had this when it launch years ago. I hope this is just the author’s interpretation, and not Google announcing something it feels is innovative!

  6. Pal Pre was too early with wireless charging on the market! No support from other companies, because it was propretary. It is always a good thing to go with standards like USB, Bluetooth … wireless charging has a standard called Qi. 139 companies are behind this. Just google, bing or amazon QI charger you will see that you have options. Wireless charging is a convinience. You don’t have to plug in the charging cable. If you get a call, you can just pick up and put it back on the charging plate when you are done. Not all phones support Qi charging, but there is a cover or case for popular phones like Samsung GS3, iPhone 4/5 … Toyota introduced Avalon Model with Qi charging station. The new models like NExus4, Nokia Lumia 920, HTC WP8X already have it …So I would think in few years the majority of the phones will support it by default. We all love progress. That’s why we drive cars and not riding on horses :)

  7. How did this thing get all the way to consumers Yet no one figured out it’s of no use to anyone?. A charging device that can only be used on a Nexus 4. I’m betting this won’t even work on the new model they have in the works much less any other Smartphone on the planet. There is a good idea here but a universal charger idea has to be a minimum requirement. /s Of course I’m making a big jump here and assuming they want me to upgrade to the next best SmartPhone they offer every 6 months.

  8. Certainly sounds and looks good but in a nutshell its a bit pointless.

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