RAVPower Qi wireless portable charger review

Wireless chargers are cool gadgets to have, and portable batteries are great to have, but you know what’s even better? A combination of the two.

That’s exactly what RAVPower’s hybrid creation is, too. The Qi wireless battery is a fully functional, portable battery with a wireless charging coil built into the top side for compatible devices.

Is having a combination of both devices worthwhile? Let’s find out.

There’s not much to talk about when it comes to the design of a portable battery. In this case, you’ll get a fairly large 10400mAh battery, although the casing for the gadget does seem much larger than other similarly sized batteries. Part of that is likely due to the rubberized charging spot on the top of the battery and the coils inside for the actual wireless charging.

Read up on RAVPower’s HyperAir technology

Since it’s not a ridiculously huge battery, it’s pretty light for its size. Unfortunately, the light weight and plasticky finish makes the battery bank feel kind of cheap, and much cheaper than you’d expect from something in its price range.

On the bottom side of the device you’ll find a microUSB port, USB A port, and a button to turn the charger on and off for wireless charging. And yes, you will need to manually turn the battery on if you want to use the wireless charging features; this was probably done to conserve battery, but it’s a slight inconvenience nonetheless.

Besides that little gripe, the battery itself is pretty functional. You can use it like a regular portable battery, which I probably don’t need to describe to you. It’s not a particularly fast charging battery, but it works. On the wireless charging side, it’s capable of outputting around 10W of power to a compatible Samsung device for fast wireless charging that’s pretty-quick-but-not-quite-plugged-in-quick.

It’s pretty important to remember that besides speed, wireless charging is also a bit less efficient than regular charging. You probably know how many charges you’ll get from a 10000mAh battery on your personal device, but when you throw wireless charging into the mix you’re going to lose a small but noticeable percentage of that battery to the fact that Qi charging is simply less efficient than plugging a cable in. Would that be a dealbreaker? It probably depends on how often you recharge your rechargeable batteries during the week.

In practice, I found that the wireless charger was a nice, but not incredibly useful addition. At this point that’s probably more of a fault of Qi charging than RAVPower’s device, but the limited range and auto shutoff features of the battery caused some frustrations.

 

Like any other wireless charger, your device needs to be fairly close to activate the charge. If you pick your device up to respond to a text or phone call, you interrupt the charge. You can’t browse the web or play games, because again, you’ll interrupt the charge. You can keep the device held up to the charger while you use it, but it’s way too bulky for that to be feasible. You could theoretically use it as a bedside wireless charger then just unplug it and go if you need extra juice during the day or on vacation, but that does seem like it limits what the battery was made for.

On the plus side, it comes with its own really nice pouch, charging cable, and a microUSB to USB C adapter for fast charging compatible devices.

So is it a worthwhile investment? Well, you can get cheaper wireless chargers and cheaper batteries for less than what this costs, so the value proposition isn’t fantastic. But if you really hate cables and like the convenience and flexibility, it’s a really cool gadget to keep in your bag and show off. Just think about how you typically charge your phone before you take the plunge.

Buy it now: Amazon


About the Author: Jared Peters

Born in southern Alabama, Jared spends his working time selling phones and his spare time writing about them. The Android enthusiasm started with the original Motorola Droid, but the tech enthusiasm currently covers just about everything. He likes PC gaming, Lenovo's Moto Z line, and a good productivity app.