It’s difficult to imagine life without our tiny (or huge?) iPhone. When we’re busy (answering calls, sending messages, browsing emails, etc.) and even when we’re bored (i.e., checking social media feeds, watching videos, playing games, etc.), we rely on this device heavily (also known as addiction). Simply put, this smartphone is everything we’ll ever need to stay connected to the rest of the world.
However, there is a catch, an iPhone, like any other mobile device, quickly depletes its battery. Most of the time, charging your iPhone once isn’t enough to get a full day of use out of it. Whether you’re a mobile gaming fanatic who plays graphics-intensive games for hours on end or an entrepreneur who needs to build a business, you’ll always need to recharge multiple times a day.
This is where wireless charging proves to be extremely beneficial. So in today’s article, we answer questions such as what exactly is wireless charging, how does it work, and its pros and cons.
More importantly, we answer the biggest question – Is wireless charging safe for the iPhone?
Is Wireless Charging Safe For iPhone?
The newer iPhone models come with Qi-certified technology allowing you to easily charge your iPhone by simply placing it on top of a wireless charger or Qi charger. These wireless iPhone chargers are able to charge your smartphone running on the latest version of iOS at an energy rate of up to 7.5W.
While it may seem like an extremely convenient way you can charge your iPhone, you should learn how it works and see if it’s safe to use.
What is Wireless Charging and How does it work?
Wireless charging uses electromagnetic waves to transmit power from a base station or charging pad. The waves are then picked up by a receiver coil in the back of your phone, which converts them to electricity.
The smartphone is then charged with this electricity. When you place your smartphone on a wireless charging pad, the only difference you’ll notice is that your battery icon changes from its default mode to a battery with a bolt in the middle, indicating that your phone is charging.
Qi charging or Qi technology are other terms for wireless charging. Because the Qi standard was only introduced in 2008, the technology is still relatively new.
Qi employs both resonant and inductive charging, the latter of which requires the proximity of devices to function.
What Apple products use wireless charging?
The iPhone models that support wireless charging have glass backs, allowing their receiver coils to communicate with the induction coil of a charging pad. You can, however, use a protective cover on your iPhone while still charging it wirelessly.
Do remember to avoid cases that store items with magnetic strips or RFID chips, such as credit cards, passports, hotel keys, and so on, because the charging process can damage the functionality.
Remove these things or use a different protective case before charging your device. Even thick cases and covers can cause an issue. Remove the case and try again if charging does not begin automatically.
The following iPhones support wireless charging:
- iPhone 12 Pro Max (2020)
- iPhone 12 Pro (2020)
- iPhone 11 Pro Max (2019)
- iPhone 11 Pro (2019)
- iPhone 11 (2019)
- iPhone XR (2018)
- iPhone XS Max (2018)
- iPhone XS (2018)
- iPhone X (2017)
- iPhone 8 Plus (2017)
- iPhone 8 (2017)
Myths about Wireless Charging
Here are some common misconceptions about Wireless charging. These answers will surely help you understand in detail if wireless chargers are what people claim them to be or if they truly are beneficial technological updates that we do need.
Myth #1: Wireless charging pads have the potential to damage the phone and its battery.
Fact: This isn’t entirely right. If you use a low-quality wireless charger, the chances of your smartphone being damaged are high.
Some wireless charging pads are designed to protect the phone from harm when in use. The Futura X, for example, has a magnetic position that directs the phone to the correct charging position, preventing the user from fumbling with the phone and dropping it.
Myth #2: Off-brand chargers are unreliable.
Fact: Not all unofficial third-party wireless charging systems are defective.
A fake or knock-off charger behaves differently from an off-brand charger. Even if they’re off-brands, some wireless chargers work well because they’re made to strict quality specifications and sold by reputable retailers. Nothing negative can happen to your phone as long as you use a certified premium-quality wireless charger.
Cheap and counterfeit wireless chargers, on the other hand, pose a danger. They’re most likely made without quality control and distributed by shady distributors.
Myth #3: Wireless chargers are incompatible with older phones.
Fact: Because they don’t have a built-in receiver, older Qi-enabled phones can’t be charged directly with wireless charging devices. However, they can still be charged wirelessly by adding a third-party add-on such as a receiver patch on the back of the handset.
Myth #4: If you leave your phone on while it’s charging, it’ll get damaged.
Fact: If you’re charging your phone and just use it to receive messages or listen to music, you shouldn’t be bothered (with the screen turned off). Conditions that cause overheating and eventual phone harm, such as running graphics-intensive apps and having poor ventilation when charging your phone on a wireless charging pad, should be avoided.
Myth #5: Your device will be damaged if you charge it overnight.
Fact: Smartphones, and even wireless charging systems, are smart enough to detect when your phone is fully charged and avoid transmitting power to it.
However, charging your phone for an extended period can be dangerous, as wireless charging pads still emit heat. As a precaution, don’t leave your phone on the wireless charger for an excessive amount of time. Keep your phone charged between 40 and 80 percent to get the most out of its battery.
Is Wireless Charging Safe for iPhones?
Finally, it is time to answer the most important question. When it comes to health and safety, the impact of electromagnetic fields (EMF) generated by wireless chargers is a common source of concern. Anxiety, depression, insomnia, and suicide are all health hazards associated with elevated levels of EMF.
Wireless charging, on the other hand, emits far too little EMF to be hazardous to one’s health because it does not require human contact with the charging pad. In fact, according to a study conducted by the World Health Organization (WHO), low EMF emissions do not cause any health problems.
Similarly, misusing a wireless adapter (rather than the charger itself) will damage your iPhone. To stop overheating, make sure you use a wireless charger that is well-ventilated. To stop unnecessary heat on the charging pad, some wireless chargers automatically turn off when the phone is fully charged, so that’s one less thing to think about.
Bear in mind that genuine products, like wireless chargers, are always the best. Despite the many misconceptions surrounding wireless charging, it is still the best way to charge your battery. Wireless charging can take longer to charge than conventional plug-in charging, but it removes the use of cords, which can be tangled and cause the user to trip.
So in a nutshell, iPhone wireless charging is safe and secure. You can get the most out of your wireless charging pad if you use it and care for it properly.
Pros and Cons of Using a Wireless Charger
It is time for some Pros and Cons discussion. I am sure after reading this article your mindset regarding wireless chargers has changed. Nevertheless, it is important to understand the Pros and Cons part of wireless charging.
- Fewer cords to worry about: It’s a no-brainer on this one. You won’t have to carry your USB-c charger around with you if you use wireless technology. There is only one cable that needs to be attached to the charging pad.
- Universal compatibility: Since Qi charging is a universal standard, you can use the same charging pad with multiple wireless-capable devices without any problems.
- Safer connections: There is no corrosion since the charging takes place in an enclosed space without the use of wires. There is also no exposure to water or oxygen. This also implies that electrical faults are less likely. This is a significant benefit, given the abundance of companies offering sloppy charging cables.
- More durable: Since the smartphone sockets aren’t plugged in or unplugged on a regular basis, there is no wear and tear on them. The cables will last longer if you choose to charge wirelessly and not charge with cords.
- Won’t overheat your phone: When your phone is fully charged, the wireless charger turns off automatically. This saves electricity, makes charging safer, and keeps the battery from overheating.
- Not exactly wireless: When people hear the word “wireless,” they automatically picture being able to move about with relative ease. Sadly, this isn’t the case for wireless charging. Unlike a cable, which allows you to travel around the circumference of the cord, modern wireless charging requires the device to sit on top of the charging pad to charge continuously.
- You aren’t able to use your phone: As the phone needs to stay on the pad to continue charging you won’t be able to use it freely.
- It takes longer to charge your phone: Since Qi charging has a lower efficiency than cable charging, it takes longer to charge wirelessly with the same amount of power. Wireless charging is said to take 30-80 percent longer than charging with a cable to completely charge your battery.
- You have to pay closer attention to your phone: The biggest drawback of wireless charging is that you need to pay more attention to charging your phone. This is because if you pick up your phone to use it quickly when it’s charging, you’ll have to put it down with far more care. People are used to picking up and setting down their phones without much thought. It’s not a big deal if you have a cord attached. It is not charging if you put your phone down carelessly and it is not perfectly positioned on the pad.
- Wireless charging pads cost more than cable chargers: A wireless charging pad is more expensive to buy as a relatively new technology, particularly when new smartphones come with a corded charger in the box.
Points To Note:
When it comes to wireless charging, there are a few things to keep in mind.
- The first thing to remember is the alignment of the device on the charging pad. When the device is properly positioned on the charging pad, it receives more power and charges faster than when it is misaligned. Since charging only occurs when the iPhone is properly aligned, it’s possible that if it’s placed wrongly, it won’t charge at all.
- When you put an iPhone on a wireless charger, you’ll hear a chime and see the display turn on, indicating that it’s starting to charge. Keep an eye or ear out for these if you put a device on a pad to ensure it’s getting the power.
- After a long charging period, you might notice that the iPhone gets a little warm. This is natural, and as a safety feature, Apple provides a software limit that can prevent charging beyond 80% if the battery gets too warm.
- Finally, bear in mind that wireless charging is not the most effective form of charging your iPhone. If you want to get the most power into your iPhone in the shortest period of time, the Lightning port is the way to go.
While Qi charging or wireless charging an iPhone may be safe, it’s not anywhere close to how efficient your lightning charge is. Yes, it does limit the amount of wires used to charge the device, but at what cost?
Apple has managed to implement certain updates to the iPhone’s charging capabilities and with wireless charging, there’s no chance your iPhone would get damaged (be it an original wireless charger or a third-party one).
In the end, you will have to decide whether you’re going to opt for wireless or a wired charging method.
Daniel Moore is the Founder & Editor-in-chief of Private-Spy, an experienced hacker, lecturer and an all-round fun guy! A writer by day and reader by night, he holds a Master’s degree in Computer applications and believes that privacy is our god given right. Daniel has been known to have published in-depth guides and tutorials that have been used by millions of people across the world.