Following the successful launch of Ikea’s wireless charging furniture range, we decided to go hands-on with some of its most popular additions.
You may not have come across it yet unless you inhabit the world of high-end Android phones, but wireless charging is becoming an increasingly popular and convenient mobile technology that you’re going to start to see cropping up in all sorts of place.
There are two main standards right now, in Qi and PMA and if you’re looking for examples of them in the real world, select McDonald’s establishments have Qi chargers to hand, whilst coffee chain Starbucks offers PMA plates and adapters all over the place.
So what about bringing wireless charging into your home? Thankfully the technology really needed a big brand to push it into the mainstream and luckily Ikea now offers a whole range of Qi-enabled furnishings for your lounge, kitchen, bedroom and pretty much anywhere you might need one.
The Selje is an attractive little nightstand that took us about 20 minutes to assemble with nothing but the instructions and a screwdriver.
It’s got a clean, angular design, a single drawer and most importantly an integrated wireless charging point built right into the table top. As it and all of Ikea’s wireless charging furniture is Qi-based you’ll need to make sure you have a compatible phone like the Nexus 5, Galaxy S6 or a compatible accessory.
Thankfully the company’s also made some affordable cases for popular handsets like the Samsung Galaxy S3, S4 and S5 as well as every iPhone since the iPhone 4 that’ll add wireless charging functionality to your phone.
If the Selje doesn’t float your boat however there are also other furnishings like the Riggad work lamp and variations on a standalone tabletop pad too, that you can place pretty much anywhere provided it’s near a plug point.
Right now wireless charging does have its limitations though; namely that few phones currently support the feature natively and that it’s slower than conventional charging. The Ikea wares get around this speed bump by integrating USB connections into the sides of their chargers for those times when the standard wireless method isn’t fast enough.
Wireless charging has a little ways to go to become the new way to keep your phone juiced up, but with companies like Ikea making it more affordable and accessible than ever, along with products from the likes of Samsung that continue to refine the technology to make it more efficient (the Galaxy S6 Edge+ is the first device to boast fast wireless charging), we soon might be able to do away with the humble USB cable altogether.