Why The Nexus Phones Don't Have Qi Wireless Charging: USB Type-C Rocks

By 01:22 Wed, 28 Jul 2021 Comments

Part of the reason we liked the Nexus 5 (2013) so much was that it incorporated technology that wasn’t mainstream yet – things like OIS and wireless charging. So it was disappointing to see the recent Nexus phones hold a step back, but at least now we know why.

Hiroshi Lockheimer, Android VP of Engineering, explained the reasoning behind the go in a Reddit AMA. Essentially, microUniversal Serial Bus (USB) was seen as slow and a hassle and wireless charging made sense. Now Universal Serial Bus (USB) Type-C plugs is easier to plug in and charges the battery faster, plus dropping Qi wireless charging allowed the engineers to create the phone thinner.

Straight from the horse's mouth:

...So, ease of plugging in + quick charging + optimizing for thinness made us double down on Type-C instead of wireless!

Now, the Nexus chargers are only 15W, while Oppo pushed 25W through microUniversal Serial Bus (USB) 2.0 so the "quick charging" claim doesn’t stand.Plus we even have quick wireless chargers – not as quick as their wired counterparts, but much faster than what the Nexus 4 and 5 had.

Also, the Galaxy S6 is a full millimeter thinner than the Nexus 5X and it supports two wireless charging standards. True, its battery is 150mAh smaller, but I think making the phone 1mm thicker could easily have filled that in. So that's dubious too. The Galaxy S6 edge+ is thinner than the Nexus 6P too, though the incompatibility in thickness is smaller, while the incompatibility in battery bigger.

The Universal Serial Bus (USB) Type-C is indeed easier to plug in, there's no reason for this to be an either-or situation. You can read the rest of the AMA here.

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