ProClip USA Wireless Charging Analysis – Do YOU Need Qi?

October 4, 2017 •

Qi Wireless Charging

Qi Wireless charging is the hot feature now that Samsung and Apple both have wireless charging functionality built-in to the rear of their flagship devices. These devices include the iPhone 8/8Plus, iPhone X, the Galaxy S8/S8+ and the Note8. Customers have been pointing out Qi fast charging and convenience as reasons we should build a holder with Qi. We are currently looking into Qi, but do not have any firm plans to make holders that support it. Below are a few reasons why.

Qi Wireless Charging Phone Holders

Reason One

First, Qi version 1.1 (the most common version of Qi) charging is not fast enough to keep a phone charged while using it for things like GPS, music or phone calls. ProClip charging holders are meant to keep the phone charged while using it in a car. We tested Qi 1.1 in our current holders using GPS and other apps to see how much power was gained. After an hour of continuous charging while using navigation, the iPhone 8 had only increased in battery level by 1%.

Qi 1.1 outputs a maximum power of 5 watts, which is simply not enough to charge effectively while using the phone for other important car apps. The speed of Qi 1.1 is a concern when compared with our charging holder with USB cigarette lighter plug. Our USB cigarette lighter plug delivers a maximum power of 10.5 watts, which effectively charges the phone while apps are in use. There is a possible solution to this, which is Qi version 1.2.

Reason Two

While Qi 1.2 was released several years ago, many wireless chargers still do not use it. However, the models that use 1.2 are capable of delivering up to 15 watts to a device. (The new iPhones only support a maximum of 7.5 watts while wireless charging, even on a Qi 1.2 compatible charger.) This is plenty of power to keep a device charging while in use, but Qi 1.2 chargers tend to be bulkier than their 1.1 counterparts. This will make it difficult to fit into a ProClip standard holder built from the dimensions of the average smartphone. We will be watching Qi’s progress closely and continue testing when Qi chargers that meet our standards become available.

Reason Three

Potential safety concerns also exist for wireless chargers in the vehicle. The wireless charger uses a magnetic field, which some have been reported to interfere with built-in navigation or push-button start. Wireless charging was originally made for the household, meant to lay inactive on a charging pad, not while using a variety of apps in-vehicle. Current generation wireless chargers still need to be wired in-vehicle using USB input or the cigarette lighter plug. If you still have to use a cable, then what’s the benefit from a holder with built-in cable for charging? Why not use a charging option that lets you run your favorite apps while still sufficiently charging your device? ProClip holders also allow for use with the device with skin/case. Some phone cases will not allow Qi charging to function properly. Let us know your feedback in the comments below!

The ProClip Solution: Charging Phone Holders

If you are looking to charge your new Apple iPhone today, we have a solution: ProClip charging holders for the iPhone 8 and 8 Plus are available now. We have cable attachment holders to plug in your own Apple Lightning cable. We also have charging holders with built-in cable for USB cigarette lighter plug. Pair with a custom vehicle mount for the complete in-vehicle charging solution.

  • NGCodec

    Without a Pro Clip Qi Wireless Charging Phone Holder I am dumping Pro Clip after 6 years. I will go with another solution. Reasons 1 and 2 are the same. Same as old USB chargers. Reason is that new tech is coming. This is true for everything in tech. Reason four I don’t buy it. The device are FCC approved.

    • Pavel Brun

      There is no other solution. Why the hate on for Pro Clip. As they said, Qi chargers require a power source/cable leading up to the holder. If that is the case, when why not just eliminate Qi all together in the car and charge it via USB?

      • NGCodec

        @pavelbrun:disqus Two reasons:
        1) Its quicker to put on/off a wireless charger than to use a ProClip dock. It need less dexterity.
        2) Its future proof. Next year when I get a new phone will not have to change the mount. (I know this is not great for ProClip which is why they may be resisting)

        • rainbuckets

          +1

        • ProClip USA

          @aaronpailthorp:disqus @ngcodec:disqus, We haven’t ruled out using Qi integrated into our holders it’s just that the current technology for in-vehicle use is really not there yet. When it is we really don’t see any issues with offering it in our current holder design which does mean that our holders will still be custom fit for each device. We will most likely have it available in our adjustable holders as well. Thank you! ProClip USA

    • ProClip USA

      Hello NGCodec, Thanks for being a loyal customer for the past 6 years, we really appreciate the business. As for Qi charging we welcome you to do your own in-vehicle testing with the technology currently available and let us know what you find. Also, if you know of a company that provides 1.2 Qi charging please let us know so we can reach out to them but as we said in the blog article and as Pavel Brun says below, if you have to have the Qi charging plugged into the vehicle why not just use one of our charging holders that we all know provides a much stronger charge. Thanks again! ProClip USA

  • rainbuckets

    Yeah, I’m disappointed by this also. The Lightning connector is not a great docking connector, and I guess Qi wireless, which yes doesn’t push as much power as hard wired, is what Apple is offering to help. I really want a decent Qi car dock to try, and I’m surprised ProClip doesn’t think they can make this work. Ten year customer here, still shopping…

  • Keith Wilson

    This is very disappointing. I have been a loyal customer for going on 7 years. The lightning connector is not the best dock. I always buy the holder for thin cases and the holder really has to be screwed down super tight to align correctly. After awhile of use it does get a little looser causing it to align incorrectly. It is also a pain when I think it is all the way down but it is not charging. It is a pain while driving trying to dock while keeping eyes on the road. I am in sales and am in my car all day long so I am constantly using my phone.Qi offers some great advantages for me. No more alignment issues. I can leave on dock while using bluetooth but easily remove for email/texts and when holding phone to my ear. Plus the dock does wear out my cases after awhile.

    I will be preordering the iPhone X for my wife, daughter, and myself and we each have vehicles with ProClipUSA docks. Every year I order the new docks from you without hesitating. This is the first time I have to shop for something else. I don’t want to but I don’t want cords connecting to my phone in the car. I am perfectly OK with a cord connected to my dock though.

    I realize there is a compromise and it is not perfect. I am willing to have slower charging to eliminate constant docking to the lightning cable connection and worrying about alignment issues.

    • ProClip USA

      Hi Keith, Thanks for all the feedback and being a customer for so many years. I don’t know if you saw the charging test results of Qi in the car but 1% increase in battery after an hour of charging is not something we fill good about integrating with our holders and selling. Once the technology has progressed to more realistic charging increase while using nav or music apps we will move forward with our design. Thanks again, ProClip USA

      • Keith Wilson

        Qi 1.2 is the answer for this. The new iPhones will also have an update to support 7.5 watt charging. The future is wireless everything and the market is moving towards it quickly. If you give consumers what they want you may be surprised how many people buy it. At least give the consumer a choice. I will be willing to pay more for qi charging even if it is slower than wired.

  • Natalia H

    I am rejoining the wireless world, after being out of it for the last two years. I have had a wireless car charging dock that worked quite well with my previous qi phone, and was looking forward to using it again. I’ve been using Pro Clip for my last two models, and have come to appreciate the high quality of your products. I’m sorry but your explanations for why your company won’t support qi don’t hold up. A 15 second google search yielded qi 1.2 car chargers – so they are clearly being made. Many of us expect a car charger to keep a phone charged. If my phone was critically low, I would simply plug the power in directly to the phone. There is a reason why this is becoming a must have feature in flagship phones; people want it! Please don’t forget that others may have different priorities and there is a stong market for a Qi car charger.

  • James Maccubbin

    I’ve had ProClip for so many years and for so many different devices that I can’t count them. I have always been happy with the product in all of my cars and with all of my devices. At this point though, I’m psyched about having a wireless phone station and will settle for nothing less than a wireless solution. This probably means going elsewhere. As the VP of Design for some very big international consumer tech brands, I can offer this – at least give consumers the option. Build more friction into the buy path, do whatever you feel you need to do to get your point across, but give the option. The explanation above sounds too much like an excuse from a perfectionist Engineer than real reasons to not give your customer the choice.

    • Mark B

      Agree totally with James.

      Offer a solution with both options, with an “I told you so” premium.

      I’ve been a ProClip user now for various phones in multiple vehicles (it’s cool that we are able to only change the vehicle part OR the phone part, depending on what’s required.)

      I check back here regularly, looking for a iphone-x solution WITH wireless charging built in.

      I’ll either get a ProClip with wireless charging, or a competing system with wireless charging — at which time I’ll (in all likelihood) stop checking this site.

      My current vehicles each have a ProClip with “Locking Move Clip”. When looking at competing wireless mounts, I pay attention to a solution that might allow the main part of the device to be attached to the “Locking Move Clip” adapter plate — at least allowing me to use part of my ProClip.

      For what it’s worth, my current holders with included lightning connectors work great — except that if I miss the connection slightly (phone too far forward), the connector hits the bottom of my screen protector — which causes me to go through tempered glass screen protectors prematurely due to the cracks at the bottom. This would no longer be an issue with Qi.

  • Matt Legler

    Some cars already have Qi wireless charging. I don’t always take time to plug in the lightning cable. It would be nice if the trickle charge was always there every time I jumped in my vehicle without having to think about any manual plugs. I would love if this feature was included on a ProClip USA charger.

  • Socius

    iPhone X with 7.5W wireless charging is more than enough to sustain/charge battery life even during use. I have mine running full 3d games while on the wireless charging pad while still charging. I would like to not have to worry about what case I’m using and whether it’d allow the lightning cable to fit in there with the built in clip models you have. And I’d also like to not worry about having to manually plug in the cable with your basic models. I just want to slide it in and have it charge. I’ll be upgrading the mount in 4 of my cars once you provide wireless charging support.

    Give customers the option. Don’t make the decision for them. Many people would be happy with just not losing battery life while running GPS with full screen brightness. But even then it’s not that bad. 7.5W wireless charging is considerably faster than charging your phone with the standard iPhone charger at home.

  • Bob German

    If you’ve never used qi day to day, I don’t think you can appreciate how much easier it is than lining up a physical plug. I’m disappointed at Proclip’s stance on this! It’s not even new tech. I can live with the slow charge of 1.1 or a bulkier 1.2 unit. How about a choice that doesn’t involve finding another mounting solution entirely? I’m looking!