Huge Moto 360 Leak Outs Wireless Charger, IP67 Rating, 2.5 Day Battery Life, and More

Notice the circular stickers attached to the Moto 360 in the picture at the top of this post? Those were included on the device that we photographed at Google I/O, which were measures taken by Motorola to hide certain aspects of the device that they weren’t quite ready to talk about. Now, take a look at the image below from Mr. Gadget, who spent enough time with the device without those stickers on to give us a mini review while also outing all sorts of specs that had yet to see confirmation. It should be instantly clear why Motorola had those stickers in place.  (more…)

Qi Wireless Charging Version 1.2 Will Leave Space Between Your Phone and Charging Pad

While wireless charging is somewhat useful, it doesn’t actually make charging a device any easier, considering you can’t remove the device from the charging pad without ending the charge. At least when your phone is hooked up to the wall charger you can use it like a normal phone still. Hopefully, with the newest version of the Qi Wireless Charging standard, this pain point of wireless charging will be kind of addressed. (more…)

Dear Carriers, If You are Going to Take Features From Phones to Make Money, Give Us Options to Get Them Back

Last week, we featured a deal for an unlocked LG G3 that could be snagged on eBay for $500. We picked one up because international versions of phones not only seem to receive updates much quicker than their counterparts here in the States (a topic for another day), but this is the model of the G3 that features wireless charging out of the box, something US carriers (Verizon and AT&T in particular) removed so that they could make extra money off of customers like you and me with accessories that add features like this on.

Once the device arrived, I slapped it on the Qi wireless charger that never leaves my desk, just to test the functionality on a G3. Sure enough, it worked without hassle straight out of the box. I didn’t need to slap a new cover on or attach a case, it just charges as if the feature is built-in, which it is. While this should have brought immediate joy, it also brought on a substantial amount of anger even quicker. Why? Because carriers in the US have robbed us of features like this for years to help them make an extra buck or two. And while I’m fine with companies trying to get richer (I’m sure we all would do the same), the way they go about it frustrates the hell out of me. What I mean is that if you are going to dumb down my smart device, so that you can charge me for accessories to make it smarter, give me some damn choices.  (more…)

FYI: AT&T’s LG G3 Doesn’t Support Qi Charging, They Went With the Charging Standard No One Uses

If you plan on picking up the LG G3 from any of the carriers in the US, you likely already know that the US carriers are forcing you to buy optional accessories in order to enable wireless charging. The G3 in the UK and other countries includes wireless charging backs out of the box, much like the Verizon G2 did last year, but things have changed this time around in our home country. Carriers are greedy, we get it. They want you to spend more on the phone you just locked into for two years or spent hundreds on to get the most out of it.  (more…)

Starbucks Begins Nationwide Rollout of Wireless Chargers in Coffee Shops

We have to agree with Chief Digital Officer of Starbucks Adam Brotman on this one – hunting around for an outlet for your phone charger at the café can be a bit of a chore. That’s why the coffee shop giant will begin to use Duracell chargers as “Powermat Spots” within Starbucks and Teavana shops to let you wirelessly charge your devices.

The rollout will begin slowly - only Boston and San Jose offer Powermat charging today - but Starbucks has plans to expand the initiative nationwide in 2015. Stores in the San Francisco Bay area will see it sooner.  (more…)

New Broadcom Chip is Compatible With Every Wireless Charging Standard

To say wireless charging is confusing to the average consumer is a massive understatement. A myriad of competing standards – Qi and tech from the Power Matters Alliance, for example – make picking out power docks compatible with your smartphone generally unpleasant. Even worse? When the time to upgrade your handset comes, you may be stuck with an incompatible dock and have to settle with a plug-in adapter dongle. Annoying.

Thankfully, Broadcom thinks it has the answer to that particular problem. The company has developed a new wireless power receiver, the BCM59350, that is compatible with every wireless charging technology on the market. No more having to worry about whether your charging plate is Qi-compatible or not – if your device contains the chip, it’ll charge regardless. (more…)