My friends over at Mobile Fun have a ton of accessories available for all of the most popular mobile devices, and after I recently acquired an Google Nexus 7, they decided to sent me a Kidigi Qi wireless charging dock. (They’ve got lots of other great Nexus 7 chargers, too.)
I’ve been really interested in wireless charging ever since I first started using it on a daily basis with my Nexus 4. But how does this one stack up to some of the other wireless chargers out there?
What I like
Well, there’s a lot to like about this charger. Since it’s especially designed for the new Nexus 7, it’s incredibly easy to slip the tablet right in – there’s no moving it around to try and find that “sweet spot,” like there is with other wireless chargers. Since this also doubles as a dock, it’s practically impossible for the tablet to get bumped out of place, too.
Even though Qi wireless charging is slower than traditional charging, in my experience it only takes about six-seven hours to fully charge the larger battery on the Nexus 7. Additionally, it is compatible with all USB/microUSB charging cables, so there’s no need worry about plug compatibility (this was an issue with a few previous chargers I have tried out).
As an added bonus, it’s possible to charge the Nexus 4 in this dock, too, as long as you place the phone in it vertically. It does not work with the Nexus 5, though. That’s definitely not a knock on the charger, as it’s not really designed for anything but the Nexus 7 – I just consider the Nexus 4 charging to be a nice, unexpected, fringe benefit.
What I don’t like
The charger beeps very loudly when placing the Nexus 7 in the cradle. Like, really loud. This means that, if I stay up reading one night in bed, my partner will inevitably be woken up once I put my tablet in the dock to charge overnight, thinking that an alarm of some kind is going off.
I shot a quick video, available below, to demonstrate this. It sounds louder in person than it does here, but it’s still pretty loud:
My other main gripe with this dock is that the LED is bright, and it never turns off. Ever. When it’s charging the Nexus 7, it blinks, and when it’s plugged in but idle, it remains on. (See the video above.) This wouldn’t necessarily be so bad if it weren’t so bright! Again, this can sometimes be a little distracting in an otherwise pitch black bedroom at night.
A smaller gripe I have is that the dock isn’t compatible with any cases or covers. It’s a minor annoyance, but since my Nexus 7 doesn’t go anywhere without its case, it’s an annoyance I am forced to deal with.
As a side note, I’ve been told that Kidigi has since revised this case, so that it doesn’t beep anymore, and so the LED light isn’t quite as bright. Those are both welcome changes, but it still looks like this is only for use with a naked Nexus 7.
If this was about half the price, I’d recommend it in a heartbeat. It charges fast (for a wireless charger, anyway), it fits the Nexus 7 perfectly, and it’s held up well in my several weeks of testing. Other than a few minor gripes, which seem to have been corrected in more recent revisions, it’s really great. The price, however, is not.
Mobile Fun is currently selling it for $65.99, which is even more expensive than Google’s official Nexus wireless charger, which is only $50. The official Nexus wireless charger uses magnets to hold devices in place, which is a really brilliant idea, and it’s compatible with practically all Qi-compatible devices. For that reason, I’d probably have to recommend that one over this.
In its own right, Kidigi made a fine product. The price simply needs to be adjusted, given the competition.
The Kidigi Qi wireless charging dock for the Google Nexus 7 is $65.99 at Mobile Fun.