5 On Your Side

Mat chargers a convenient option for cellphones

Posted January 13, 2014

With so many cellphones per household, many people are looking for an easier option than plugging in all those cords.

Consumer Reports tested four wireless charging mats, which charge cellphones without plugging them to a wall.

Tests show the iPhone charges in about the same time as a wall charger. Some mats for Android phones took a little longer, but not much.

To work, the phone needs wireless charging capability. Newer models have it, but others need a special case.

Overall, Consumer Reports says the pads are a great way to make charging easier.

"You come home at the end of the day, you plop your phone on this device, you don't have to look for a charger,” said Gerard Catapano of Consumer Reports. “You can just drop it on there, and in a couple of hours your phone is charged. And you can charge multiple phones at the same time."

For iPhones, testers recommend the Duracell Powermat for $70. It charges up to three phones at a time in two to two-and-a-half hours.

For Androids, the fastest mat tested was the $75 Energizer Inductive Charger, which can charge two phones wirelessly at a time.


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  • GravyPig Jan 16, 2014

    The inductive charging technology was great for my WII remotes. Certainly worth the hassle of taking them apart to replace batteries.

    For phones, the cable isn't that hard to keep up with and pluging/unplugging a cable is no more difficult than laying it down on a charging mat. I guess the folks who want to have the latest tech will jump at the chance to use this.

    Like most on here, I'll pass on paing extra to charge my phone when all I need is a USB cord or the charger.

  • sinenomine Jan 15, 2014

    OR you can just use the charger that came with the phone. Mine is plugged into the bedroom wall beside my dresser so I know where it is all the time.

    Just how lazy must a person be to pay $70.00 for one of these mats?

  • letsgocanes Jan 14, 2014

    Or you can get one on Amazon that doesn't have an aging name brand on it for $30.

    And yes, an iPhone will need a special wireless charge case. It still doesn't have wireless charging built in yet.

  • ncfatboy Jan 14, 2014

    As far as I can tell, for iPhones, you have to use their charging case...

  • Fuquay Resident Jan 13, 2014

    For $75, I think I'll just use the charger that came free with my phone.

  • GK N.Ral Jan 13, 2014

    If people do not know where they put the cords to charge phones, etc., what makes you think that they will know where the charging mat is located?