Nexus Wireless Charging Orb Review

April 3, 2013
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nexus wireless charging orb side aa 1600

In a time when most electronics products tend to adopt multi-function capabilities, it is rare that we witness the emergence of hardware that is specialized in just one function. Wireless chargers fit exactly into the category above, but should they also fit into our homes?

Today, we take a look at the Wireless Charging Orb for the Google Nexus 4.

Functionality

The Nexus Wireless Charging Orb’s name is pretty explanatory, since it’s a wireless charger that hails from Google’s official Nexus line of hardware products. As for the “Orb” part of the branding, that’s pretty obvious as well, with the charger being shaped like an angled, half-cut orb.

nexus wireless charging orb in hand aa 1600

Please note that, although the Wireless Charging Orb is a Nexus product, it doesn’t mean that it only works with the Google Nexus 4. The Orb can load the battery of just about any device that features Qi wireless charging capability. We have tested it with the HTC Droid DNA and it works just fine.

Design

Your smartphone sticks to the angled surface of the Orb thanks to a plasticky material that surrounds the middle. The smartphone can be placed in either portrait mode or landscape mode (ideal for consuming video content at your desk). In addition, the 120 grams Wireless Charging Orb is easy to set up: place the device on your desk, connect it to a plug via the microUSB power cable, and you’re all done.

nexus wireless charging orb back plugged in aa 1600

Charging Times

According to the quick start guide, the Orb should charge a dead 2150mAh battery in about four hours, under perfect conditions. However, the same guide also mentions that there are a lot of factors that can alter the charging time, a fact that we’ve noticed ourselves when the Orb was done charging a dead Google Nexus 4 in around six hours. By comparison, we have managed to accomplish the same task in just 3 and a half hours using a standard USB charging cable.

Video Review

Takeaways

The charging time is not something to write home about, but the Wireless Charging Orb doesn’t provide just an easy way to charge your smartphone.  It also acts like a docking station while you are at your desk. Using the Orb is so convenient that power will flow more often into your smartphone, than it does when you have to perform acrobatics to find and use the USB charging cable.

nexus 4 wireless charging orb android aa 1600

To be honest, most of the things we love about the Nexus Wireless Charging Orb stand true for all wireless chargers out there. In addition, given that the $60 price tag is also comparable to these other chargers, the decision to purchase the Orb can be based solely on personal preference.

As far as the team here at Android Authority is concerned (a team where the Nexus 4 is quite popular), this is our favorite wireless charger out there so far.

What is your take on the Nexus Wireless Charging Orb ? Is it the wireless charger to get, or would you rather wait for better charging times before you switch to this new technology?

Mike Andrici contributed to this review.

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