The TYLT Vu Qi Wireless Charger (via Amazon) is one of the more interesting chargers you will find with its unique shape and bright colors. Initially I almost skipped over it because I thought it was too flashy and didn’t seem like a serious option. Eventually I took the plunge and grabbed it regardless of the slightly more expensive price and I’m pretty happy that I did.
I was pretty excited about the fact that my Samsung Galaxy S5 was water resistant but I didn’t think about the practical issues that came along with that feature until after I had purchased the phone. Part of the way that the phone is made water resistant is by using a small plastic door that covers the USB 3.0 charging port on the bottom of the phone. On a positive note, that keeps water out of your phone, but the negative is that its a plastic flap that over time will break from frequent opening and closing of it to charge your phone. After the first time this happened to me I was pretty annoyed at this obvious defect and had to seek out a Galaxy S5 USB replacement door (via eBay – look how many of these things have been sold!) which wasn’t easy to track down at the time. I figured that after paying for shipping for a $5 part from China and waiting 2 weeks to get it, I had better come up with an alternative plan for charging this phone that I otherwise really like. The obvious answer was a wireless charger so I didn’t have to fiddle with USB door constantly to the point where it would break off.
The TYLT Vu Qi wireless charger is pretty thin but definitely very sturdy and well constructed. From front to back it measures approximately 8 inches at the widest points and its height at the peak is 3.5 inches. As you can tell from the previous images the charger actually stars out pretty wide in the front at 3.75 inches and then tappers to a more narrow 1.75 inches at the back where the cable plugs in.
On the bottom of the TYLT Vu Qi wireless charger, there is one long rubber foot at the front and two smaller ones at the back to prevent the device from sliding when you place the phone down on it. You can also see towards the back of the device there is a narrow slit between the two rubber feet, this is where the power cable plugs in.
Above is just a quick picture of the charger and the power supply, this is all that the device comes with, you will need a separate wireless charging compatible back for your S5 (via Amazon) or other device in order to make it compatible with any Qi wireless charger. You will notice that the power supply does not terminate in a USB 3.0 plug and this will not charge your phone as fast as plugging in a USB 3.0 cable directly into the phone. As far as I know, and as of this writing there are no wireless chargers that charge as fast as using the USB 3.0 cable plugged in directly to your phone. I found that on this charger, my S5 took an average of 4 hours and 12 minutes to charge from 15% to 100% capacity which is a rate of about 1% per every 3 minutes as compared to plugging in the USB 3.0 cable directly and getting a rate of just under 1% every minute.
This front view of the wireless charger shows the minimal and almost unnoticeable branding that you find on the device. Its simply an embossed logo done in the same color as the charger itself and it obviously doesn’t even show up if you have your phone on the device charging. The one unfortunate thing about this charger is that it doesn’t seem to charge the phone well when it is put in a portrait orientation as compared to a landscape orientation as you see in the second photo above. In the portrait orientation the device seems to constantly search for a signal and is unable to find it. For me this is not a big deal though because I use this next to my bed as a stand for my phone and I like the landscape mode better for a bigger and more clear view of the numbers on the alarm clock app for my phone. Although it wasn’t cheap, I feel that the visual appeal and the quality construction make this a worthwhile option. Also, the fact that it will spare you from having to replace the USB cover flap on the phone will save you some time and money in the long run. It is also available in a few other colors, but when you check it out on Amazon be sure to click on each color as the prices tend to change a lot and can vary by color.