Tuesday, March 01, 2016

Samsung Wireless Charger Review



Although Nokia was a major pusher of wireless charging, Samsung has taken the torch and run with it.  All of Samsung's recent flagship devices have built-in Qi and Powermat (PMT) wireless charging support: Galaxy S6, S6 edge, S6 edge plus, Note 5, S7, and S7 edge.  It only made sense that  Samsung made and sold a wireless charger of their own: Welcome the Samsung Wireless Charger.

The Samsung wireless charging pad uses the regular microUSB cable and wall charger included with your phone.  Most retail packages do not include these.


As of this writing, Samsung sells two kinds of wireless chargers: the regular one that supports Qi (EP-PG920) and another than supports Qi and Samsung's proprietary wireless quick charge (EP-PN920).  They look very similar in package and out of package; both are made from plastic, have circular dome tops with a thin ring of rubber on the top that keeps your device from slipping off,
rubber on the bottom to prevent the charge from slipping off a table, lights up green at power up and when your phone is fully charged just below the charging plate opposite side of the power cord, lights up blue while charging a device from the same side, and come in white and black.


The fast chargers on top and the non-fast charger on the bottom


The only visual difference between is the "FAST CHARGE" label and small slits on the bottom for cooling on the EP-PN920 fast charger.  The fast charger will charge a supported device 40%
faster than Qi but it's only supported by the S6 edge plus, Note 5, S7, and S7 edge at this time and you'll need to use the quick wall charger included with your phone.  Inside, a significant structural
difference separates the fast charger from the non-fast charger; to support the higher power output and the resulting extra heat, it has a fan to actively dissipate heat.  It's quiet and spins slow enough that it shouldn't be a concern.




With the non-fast wireless charger, a Samsung Galaxy S6 (2,550mAh battery) takes 2h and 20
minutes to charge from nearly empty (2%) to full.  A Note 5 (3,020mAh) takes 1 hour and 50 minutes to charge on the fast charging wireless charger.  It will work through over 25 pages of a magazine, a cell phone case, thin corrugated card board, and thin wood.  The center of the phone needs to be  within an inch of the center of the wireless charger.  Using the wireless charger also doesn't count towards your phone's charger connect counter.


The wireless charger lights up blue when it's charging and green when it's complete.  It can be distracting when it's at your bed side glowing blue while you try to sleep

** Updated 5/4/2016: I've noticed a pretty frequent problem where it'll start blinking blue and stops charging the phone about 15%.  Lifting up the phone and placing it back on will restart the charging and usually to full.  It's a pain if you expected your phone to be fully charged in the morning only to realize it stopped charging some time while you were asleep (happened to me once).

**Updated 5/11/2016: Switching the wall outlet from 2A to 0.7A has been working well without the charger stopping prematurely - a 1A wall outlet had problems too.  Unfortunately this does reduce the output of the wireless charger to 700 mAh and increases the time it takes to charge you phone by about 35% but at least you get a full charge when it stops.

The black wireless charger easily collects dust so I'd recommend going for the white version but
it's probably more likely than you'll want it to fit in with the colorof your furniture. Right now you can pick up the non-fast chargingversion for about $12 on Amazon but the fast charging unit is going for about $48 on Amazon. So unless you really need to charge your phone quickly (you should probably plug it in) and have a Samsung device that supports it then it's much better value to get the
non-fast charging version.

Manufacturer: Samsung
Place of Manufacture: Vietnam

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